CLASP Comments on “The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act”
By Andrea Amaechi, Anna Cielinski, Judy Mortrude, and Lauren Walizer
On July 6, 2016, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) submitted comments to the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce regarding “The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act,” proposed legislation to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. The bill was released by the committee on June 28, 2016.
We appreciate the sponsors’ efforts to align federal Perkins Career and Technical Education (CTE) funds with some important elements with the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), including out-of-school youth, the definition of career pathways, and other language from WIOA’s performance measures. However, we are very concerned about the bill’s proposed rollback of state accountability, along with the reduction in required state Maintenance of Effort (MOE) funding, which could lead to state disinvestment in CTE. Low-income students, including Perkins’ “special populations,” have the most to lose from lack of accountability for student outcomes and disinvestment in skills building activities that could otherwise create pathways to postsecondary education and economic success.