OLR Bill Analysis

HB 5426 (as amended by House “B”)*

AN ACT CONCERNING WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT.

SUMMARY:

This bill requires the Connecticut Employment and Training Commission (CETC), in consultation with various entities, to develop a statewide plan for implementing, expanding, or improving upon contextualized learning programs, career pathway programs, middle college programs, and early college high school programs to provide education, training, and placement in jobs available in the manufacturing, healthcare, construction, green industries, and other emerging sectors in the state's economy. The entities that CETC must consult with are Capitol Workforce Partners, The Workforce Alliance, The Workplace, Inc., the Northwest Regional Workforce Investment Board, Inc., and the Eastern Connecticut Workforce Investment Board. The plan must include a proposal to fund the programs.

The bill requires CETC to report on the plan to the Higher Education Committee by January 1, 2014. It must submit annual status reports on the programs to the Higher Education Committee beginning September 1, 2014.

Under the bill, “contextualized learning” is education in a learning environment chosen or designed by educators to incorporate as many different forms of experience as possible, including social, cultural, physical, and psychological experiences, to achieve the desired learning outcomes. An “early college high school” is a school in which students who are underrepresented in higher education may simultaneously earn, tuition free, a high school diploma and an associate degree or up to two years of credit toward a bachelors' degree. Such students include low-income youth, first-generation college students, English language learners, and minority students.

The bill defines “middle college program” as a collaboration between a school district's high schools and a regional community-technical college through which a student who wants a more independent learning environment may (1) take a combination of core high school courses and courses that earn college or university-level credit and (2) upon enrolling at a college or university after graduation, attribute those credits to a program at the college or university.

*House Amendment “B” replaces the underlying bill, which required the Office of Workforce Competitiveness to study workforce development.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2013

COMMITTEE ACTION

Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

13

Nay

6

(03/26/2013)