Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21) helped the House pass H.R. 2353 – the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. This bipartisan legislation she developed with her colleagues on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce updates federal career and technical education (CTE) policies to help more students gain the knowledge and skills they need to compete for in-demand jobs. It also includes an initiative championed by Congresswoman Stefanik to allow use of funding to support the addition of art and design skill training into CTE programs.

“One of the most common refrains I hear when I tour businesses and manufacturers across the North Country is the need for more high skilled workers,” said Congresswoman Stefanik. “To compete in a 21st century economy, workers need the skills and experience necessary to secure these high skilled jobs. This is especially important in the North Country, where we are home to industries ranging from bus to train manufacturers, and from paper mills to aerospace engineering.

“I am pleased to help the House pass this critical, bipartisan legislation to strengthen our workforce and strengthen our North Country economy. Furthermore, as the co-chair of the bipartisan STEAM caucus, I am pleased that my initiative to expand art and design training was included. As our world’s challenges become more complex, employers need workers who can think outside of the box and creatively attack problems.”

The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act will help more individuals gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed by:

  • Empowering State and Local Community Leaders
  • Improving Alignment with In-Demand Jobs
  • Increasing Transparency and Accountability
  • Ensuring a Limited Federal Role

To read a fact sheet on the bill, click here.

What They’re Saying:

Joe Keegan, Vice President for Academic Affairs, North Country Community College: “North Country Community College is fully supportive of the reauthorization of the Perkins Career and Technical Education legislation. The funding has been critically important in helping us provide multiple career pathways to our students, including in such vital areas as nursing education, which has benefits not only for our students but for the communities we serve as well.”

Sylvie Nelson, IOM, Executive Director, North Country Workforce Development Board: “The reauthorization of the Perkins Career and Technical Education is critical in ensuring training needs of the North Country’s business community are met.  This legislation plays a leading role in helping the efforts of the North Country Workforce Development Board and its partners to fill the widening skills gap that exists in the region.”

Michele M. Friedman, Director of Career & Technical Education, CV-TEC Division of Champlain Valley Educational Services: “The reauthorization of Perkins Career and Technical Education legislation is critical to maintain, sustain, and strengthen quality Career & Technical Education programs within the State of New York and across the nation.  CTE IS the pathway to future careers!”

Marc Egan, Director of Government Relations, National Education Association: “Federal support for CTE is vitally important. It helps ensure that all students, no matter what zip code they live in, have access to high-quality CTE programs and that states have the means to strengthen those programs. For secondary students, CTE provides engaging, relevant, and hands-on learning opportunities that lead to higher graduation rates and a range of postsecondary education and career options. For postsecondary students, CTE provides preparation for careers as well as opportunities to attain degrees and other credentials.”