OWC leadership members attended the National Skills Coalition 2016 Skills Summit in early February in Crystal City, Va. The event drew more than 270 workforce advocates, employers, and community college leaders from 29 states and resulted in more than 200 congressional visits and meetings with officials from both the White House and multiple governors’ offices.
Additionally, Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) provided the keynote address on his Jumpstart Our Businesses By Supporting Students (JOBS) Act which is being co-sponsored by Senator Rob Portman (R-OH). The JOBS Act would amend the Higher Education Act by expanding Pell Grant eligibility to students enrolled in short-term, job-focused training programs. OWC leadership advocated for seven different policies from the NSC’s legislative agenda ranging from the expansion of Pell grant access for short-term credentials, to an increase in resources for adult basic education, to investment in a better data system to track post-college workforce results.
Specifically, the National Skills Coalition is leading the workforce development space to focus on the following legislative priorities:
• Fund workforce and CTE state grants at authorized levels in Fiscal Year 2017
• Support doubling WIOA Title II/adult education funding
• Endorse the JOBS Act, which expands Pell eligibility to short-term, industry-validated, postsecondary certificates
• Endorse the Student Right to Know Before You Go Act to provide better information about post-college workforce results
• Endorse the Community College to Career Fund Act to provide dedicated support for partnerships between industry and community colleges
• Sponsor legislation redirecting the Work Opportunity Tax Credit to support apprenticeship and other work-based learning
• And sign a “Dear Colleague” letter calling for current restrictions on TANF skills training to be lifted.
In addition, the Ohio delegation was given the State of Action Award.
“Thanks to the persistent advocacy efforts of the Ohio delegation, the state is now home to several policies and practices that help elevate and move forward workforce development wins,” said NSC Communications Director Nicky Lauricella Coolberth in a press release. “Whether it was through administrative and legislative achievements, the Ohio delegation made sure their state was involved in these award winning actions.”
Filed under: Ohio |