Klobuchar’s Career and Technical Education Research and Outreach Act of 2018 was passed as part of the reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act

WASHINGTON- U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) announced that her Career and Technical Education Research and Outreach Act of 2018 has passed the Senate as part of the reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. The legislation would authorize research into the best ways to promote career and technical education (CTE) to students, including the best ways to involve teachers, school counselors, and parents, and the effectiveness of different forms of CTE.

“As the American workforce changes, students deserve the opportunity to find the career path that works best for them. Whether that includes a four-year degree, skills training, career-related learning, or professional development, students need to know what options are available to them,” Klobuchar said. “Passing this legislation will help us learn what forms of career and technical education are most effective and the best ways to involve schools, parents, and teachers to prepare their students for success.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the current number of job openings is at a record 6.6 million nationally. While middle-skill jobs that require some education beyond a high school diploma but not a 4-year degree account for more than half of the labor market in the U.S., only 43 percent of all workers are trained at that level. The Career and Technical Education Research and Outreach Act would help examine ways to increase the number of workers trained for these in-demand jobs.

Klobuchar has led national efforts to expand apprenticeship opportunities and strengthen Minnesota’s workforce. Klobuchar’s bipartisan American Apprenticeship Act would help create and expand pre-apprenticeship and registered apprenticeship programs. She has introduced the bipartisan Skills Investment Act of 2018 to expand Coverdell Education Savings Accounts—tax advantaged savings accounts for educational expenses—so American workers could use the accounts to pay for skills training, career-related learning, and professional development. The Klobuchar-backed Apprenticeship and Jobs Training Act of 2017 would create a tax incentive for businesses to embrace apprenticeship programs, accelerate the adoption of the apprenticeship model, and boost training and education available to workers. In 2015, Klobuchar successfully pushed for a $5 million grant from the Department of Labor to strengthen partnerships between Minnesota community colleges and local businesses and expand apprenticeship programs. The Minnesota Apprenticeship Initiative (MAI) was launched with the funding Klobuchar helped secure. By 2020, MAI will provide training for 1,000 apprentices in growing fields like advanced manufacturing, agriculture, health care services, information technology, and transportation. Minnesota recently received an additional $1.8 million federal apprenticeship grant to continue expanding registered apprenticeships throughout Minnesota.