Arts and Design Training Included!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to reauthorize career and technical education (CTE) programs that serve high school students.

The bill, Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 5587), aims to provide more flexibility around the use of federal funding for CTE programs and increase public-private partnerships that help match workers with technical training and jobs. Notably, in two sections—under state leadership activities and within local uses of funds—the bill retains new, explicit support for integrating arts and design skills training into CTE programs, permitting states and school districts to support CTE programs that integrate arts and design skills. We previously reported on this provision. It was secured by Congressional STEAM Caucus co-chairs Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) and Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) and unanimously approved during committee consideration. It is now part of the House-passed bill!

During debate today, 22 members of Congress (11 Democrats and 11 Republicans) spoke out about the bill. All of them, from both parties, shared their support, including Rep. Bonamici, who remarked, "This CTE legislation…takes important steps to help more students excel in school and in the workforce. …I want to thank my friend and colleague from New York, the co-chair of the STEAM Caucus, Congresswoman Stefanik, for working with me to include an amendment that promotes arts and design education, increasingly in high demand in numerous industry sectors that value innovation.”

The bill now moves to the U.S. Senate for consideration.