Empowering Hoosier students by giving them the right tools
As a father of four and baseball coach of many, I always love hearing about personal goals of young students, their favorite classes and what they want to be when they ‘grow up’. These hopes and dreams of our state’s children weigh heavily on me as I cast votes and author bills during the legislative session. Our legislation has a direct impact on our state’s future, our children.
This session I coauthored a bill that concerned the study of career and technical education (CTE). House Enrolled Act (HEA) 1213 will form a subcommittee to review the current Core 40 diploma course offerings. The subcommittee will include a member of each regional works council. Eight works councils were established in 2013 to evaluate the available career, technical and vocational education opportunities for high school students in their region. The subcommittee with also include representatives of high school career and technical education programs, the Department of Education, community colleges, the Commission for Higher Education and industry leaders.
We needed to address the one-size-fits-all approach to graduating Core 40 high school students. Because Core 40 is designed to produce the same learning skills in all students, it was important that we tackled the lack of diversification that currently exists. This deficiency impeded students from developing skills necessary to industry and technical education. I am glad we were successful in creating these positions to give students the best stepping stones to their futures.
CTE is important for filling jobs in growing industries such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics. HEA 1064 will take an in depth look at CTE programs to determine how we can improve them to better serve Hoosier students.
From there, the Indiana Career Council (ICC) will conduct a study on the effectiveness and efficiency of CTE programs and how CTE programs impact college and career readiness. The ICC was established with the very important task of aligning the various participants in Indiana’s educational, job skills and career training system in order to meet the current and future needs of our job market. By studying how effective these programs are, recommendations will be given on how differing CTE programs can be improved and how schools can better utilize their funding to create even stronger outcomes.
These bills will create a strong learning environment for children, and give them the proper tools needed in order to be successful in the classroom and in their future careers. Over half of our state’s budget is allocated to K-12 and higher education. As legislators, it is our jobs to make sure Indiana has one of the best education systems in the country and prepare Hoosier students for their future.
For more information on these bills and other bills, please feel free to call my office at 317-232-9833 or visit www.in.gov/legislative.