CLASP Celebrates AEFL Week: Career Pathways and Adult Education
By Judy Mortrude
Adult educators play a strong role in workforce development, which creates both individual prosperity and regional economic competitiveness. Too many working Americans have low foundational skills that prevent them from succeeding at work and achieving educational and career goals. In fact, nearly 30 percent of adults who live in poverty lack a high school credential. Meanwhile, nearly 40 percent of adults enrolled in adult education are unemployed. New strategies are needed!
The Career Pathways service delivery model—defined by Congress in the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and Higher Education Act (HEA)—can effectively support adults with barriers to success. A career pathway program delivers the foundational and occupational skills that local employers value and provides low-skill workers the supports they need to succeed. But these programs are not enough. Adult educators must partner to build programs that seamlessly align into pathways and are supported by career pathway systems.