Last week, President Obama signed the bipartisan Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act , which reauthorizes federal job training legislation. He also announced executive actions to implement a review of job training programs released by Vice President Joe Biden. The report calls for working more closely with employers and presents a “job-driven training checklist” to ensure programs lead to jobs.
The president and vice president have been talking up job training in visits to community colleges, reports Community College Daily.
President Obama said the Department of Labor no longer will give waivers for a requirement that federally funded training programs make public how many of their graduates find jobs and how much they are paid, reports Inside Higher Ed. “That means workers, as they’re shopping around for what’s available, they’ll know in advance if they can expect a good return on their investment,” Obama said.
Community colleges may not have access to employment and earnings data for former students, said James Hermes, associate vice president for government relations at the American Association of Community Colleges. “It’s not a question of them not wanting to be accountable,” he said. “It’s a question of them not getting the data in the first place.”
The administration also announced a $25 million competitive grant to create an “Online Skills Academy” that would help students earn credentials from accredited institutions.