Senator Timothy M. Kaine Introduces Legislation To Improve High School Educational System

Senator Timothy M. Kaine, along with his fellow senators, will launch the CTE Excellence and Equity Act, which encourages integration of CTE programs. The legislation will provide $500 million in federal funding to schools in the form of competitive grants.

Recent news from Richmond Times-Dispatch says the legislation encourages a partnership between universities, colleges, school districts, and employers. A group views it as a complement to recently passed legislation in the Virginia General Assembly, which aims to improve the graduation requirements to give importance to career readiness and workforce through internship and apprenticeships.

"To grow the most talented workforce in the world, we need to equip students with the skills to succeed in the 21st-century economy," Kaine said. "A high school education should prepare students for any pathway they choose, whether that's attending a four-year university, earning credentials from a community college program or getting a high-skilled job after graduation."

The bill's fate will be decided later this spring. There is a good chance that the bill is at the Senate floor later this year, according to the officials.

According to Senate.gov, the CTE Excellence and Equity Act are introduced by Kaine with his co-senators, Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va). The act also aims to develop curriculum, teach workplace skills and assess student performance.

The act is supported by the Alliance for Excellent Education, National Association of Secondary School Principals, and other career involvement organizations. 

Bob Wise, from the Alliance for Excellent Education, said, "There is a mismatch between the traditional high school experience and the expectations of higher education and employers." Wise is also a former governor of West Virginia.

"This bipartisan legislation casts a wide net, bringing in employers, school districts, colleges, and others with a stake in the quality of the nation's high school graduates to make the high school experience more engaging for students and more relevant to today's job market," Wise added. 
 

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