Career Tech Bills Pass First Legislative Test
April 26, 2007 SACRAMENTO — The first two in a series of GetREAL-sponsored bills aimed at increasing career technical education (CTE) opportunities for California students passed their first tests today, moving through the Senate and Assembly education Committees with votes of 5-2 and 8- 0 respectively. SB 672 (Torlakson) would require every high school student to take two foundational courses in career technical education as a graduation requirement and AB 1414 (Hancock) provides $250 million in funding for career tech teachers, programs and support services.
“Our coalition is extremely pleased with the results of these two hearings and are looking forward to the passage of these bills in order to restore and increase career technical education’s vital role in high school curriculum,” said Get REAL Co-Chair and California Manufacturers & Technology Association President Jack Stewart. “These bills will help prepare students to succeed in today’s changing workforce and get them excited about the many career opportunities available to them.”
"As a student, I view any opportunity to expand my skills as a good one, especially if it helps increase my chances for success later in life," said Christy Liebig, who participates in Future Farmers of America (FFA) at her school in Galt. "I have FFA -- but not everyone does. SB 672 and AB 1414 will help make career technical education available to all students. And that's a beautiful thing."
"There’s a growing need in the building and trades industry for skilled workers — and there are hundreds of thousands of high school students trying to find a career that’s right for them. We just want to increase the opportunities for both,” said State Building Construction Trades Council representative Cesar Diaz. “With the dropout rate at 30% for high school students, hands-on career tech classes can provide that spark of interest that keeps a student in school, and inspires them to make learning a real priority.”
CMTA: Gino DiCaro 916-498-3347
SBCTC: Jim Lewis 916-443-3302
GetREAL coalition members include the American Electronics Association, Antelope Valley Board of Trade, California Aerospace & Technology Alliance,
California Agricultural Teachers Assn., California Assn. of Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors, California Business Education Assn., California Correctional Peace Officers Assn., California Farm Bureau, California Industrial & Technology Education Assn., California Manufacturers & Technology Assn., California Metals Coalition, California Organization of Police & Sheriffs, California Professional Firefighters, California Space Authority, Chevron, Child Abuse Prevention Center, ConocoPhillips, Johnson & Johnson Minorities in Law Enforcement, Oxnard Chamber of Commerce Richmond Children’s Foundation, Segue Career Program, State Building & Construction Trades Council, State of California Auto Dismantlers Assn., Valley Industrial Assn. of Santa Clarita, Ventura Chamber of Commerce, Western States Petroleum Assn.