By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Rep. Paul Cook (R-Apple Valley) today voted for H.R. 2353, the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. The bill passed the House of Representatives unanimously.
This bipartisan bill addresses many issues that face career and technical education (CTE) in America today. The bill will help more Americans enter the workforce with the skills necessary to compete for and succeed in high-skilled, in-demand careers. Specifically, the legislation empowers state and local community leaders, increases transparency and accountability, and ensure the needs of both students and employers are being met. The bill also eases burdensome state requirements by simplifying the requirements states have to follow when applying for federal funds.
This bill also increases from 10 percent to 15 percent the amount of federal funds that states can set aside to assist CTE programs in rural areas or areas with a significant number of CTE students and use federal funds to support CTE programs focused on a state’s unique education and economic needs or state-based innovation.
HR 2523 also addresses the need for more CTE instructors and outlines professional development programs geared towards under-represented students, including those with disabilities.
Rep. Cook said, “Support for career and technical education is vital for maintaining a diverse economy and a variety of job opportunities for students. No matter what zip code you live in, students should be able to access to high-quality education to prepare them for jobs. These programs are important for our modern economy, and ensure that a variety set of career options are available to all types of students. I’m very pleased to see this bill pass the House with overwhelming bipartisan support.”
A member of the House Foreign Affairs, Armed Services, and Natural Resources Committees, Cook served as an infantry officer and retired after 26 years as a Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps. During his time in combat, he was awarded the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts.