Oregon to boost investment in career, technical education SB 498A will help prepare more Oregonians for jobs in fast growing industries
By Oregon House Majority Office
The Oregon House of Representatives expanded support for hands – on training and vocational programs in schools throughout the state. Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs prepare students for jobs in some of the fastest growing industries, including high-tech manufacturing, health care, green energy, agriculture, and information technology. Senate Bill 498A adds $7.5 million to Oregon’s CTE Revitalization Grant Program , which will create important learning opportunities and future job prospect s for more students throughout the state.
“My brothers didn’t go to a four-year college, but they were able to lift themselves into the middle class with hard work and good vocational training,” said Representative Shemia Fagan (D – Clackamas / East Multnomah). “ This investment will make their story possible for many more young Oregonians.” The CTE Revitalization Grant Program supports workforce training programs that will provide students with valuable rea -world experience. Twent -one schools took advantage of the last round of CTE grants to create or improve their vocational programs. The funding increase in SB 498A will expand access to many more students, schools, and local employers.
“Companies throughout Oregon are looking to hire young people with practical skills,” said House Majority Leader Val Hoyle (D – Eugene). “Investing in CTE programs will s tart getting people back to work now and strengthen our economy in the long-term.” Funding from the Oregon Department of Education will raise Oregon’s total investment in CTE grants to $9.4 million for the upcoming budget cycle. “Students who come out of high school with strong math, science, and communication skills are in extremely high demand right now,” said Representative Chris Harker (D – Beaverton). “Young people should have every opportunity to satisfy their curiosity and learn these skills, especially since it’s often the ticket to a satisfying, high – paying job.” SB 498A passed the House unanimously and now heads to Governor John Kitzhaber.