February 09, 2016

Kaine, Portman, Baldwin, Isakson Applaud Bipartisan Passage Of Career & Technical Education Month Resolution

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Tim Kaine, Rob Portman, Tammy Baldwin and Johnny Isakson – co-chairs of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus – applauded unanimous passage of a bipartisan resolution to encourage educators to promote career and technical education (CTE) as an option for students. In addition to recognizing the importance of career and technical education in preparing a skilled workforce, the resolution also designates the month of February as “Career and Technical Education Month” to celebrate CTE programs across the United States.

“Today, approximately 14 million students are enrolled in CTE, encompassing every state through nearly 1,300 public schools and 1,700 two-year colleges,” said Kaine. “These students gain real-world skills through applied learning and integrate their academic curriculum with technical and employability skills. By formally recognizing CTE Month through this resolution, it is our hope that we can build greater awareness for the importance of strengthening access to high-quality CTE for millions of America’s students and our nation’s continued economic competitiveness.”

“Career and Technical Education is an important part of ensuring Ohioans have the skills needed to fill the jobs that are available,” Portman stated. “By formally recognizing CTE month, we can build awareness and encourage more Ohio students to pursue CTE as part of their studies .”

“There is a growing belief among both parties that Career and Technical Education is one of the most effective vehicles for responding to labor market changes and the workforce readiness needs of business and industry. In Congress, we need to do a better job of supporting CTE students so that they are better equipped for the high-skilled jobs of the today. This bipartisan resolution recognizes a commitment to meeting this challenge,” Baldwin said.

“Career and technical education provides an opportunity for students across the country to gain hands-on, real-world training and experience to prepare for some of today’s most in-demand fields. I am pleased to join with my colleagues in celebrating the contributions of both students and teachers in this important area and encouraging schools across the country to provide access to this important resource,” Isakson said.

"CTE Month is an opportunity for millions of students and education professionals to share the accomplishments and importance of CTE nationwide, and we are thrilled to celebrate with our partners in the Senate Career and Technical Education Caucus this year," said ACTE Executive Director LeAnn Wilson. "By working with their colleagues to affirm the Senate's support for CTE Month and its goals through this resolution, they have advanced our community's effort to build awareness of CTE's role in preparing all students for the 21st century economy."

Several CTE provisions, including support for CTE educators and the addition of CTE as a core academic subject, were included in the Every Student Succeeds Act, the bipartisan rewrite of No Child Left Behind.

Joining Kaine, Baldwin, Portman and Isakson as co-sponsors are U.S. Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John Boozman (R-AR), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV),  Chris Coons (D-DE), Bob Casey (D-PA), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Al Franken (D-MN), Michael Enzi (R-WY), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Patty Murray (D-WA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), John Thune (R-SD), Mark Warner (D-VA) and Ron Wyden (D-OR).

A copy of the resolution is available here.