– A bill sponsored by Rep. Craig Staats (R-Bucks) that would save students time and money by providing them with access to information regarding the transfer policies of educational institutions was amended today to include a bipartisan package of career and technical education (CTE) bills to help prepare high school and college students for the jobs awaiting them.
A member of the House Education Committee, Staats is pleased to have the CTE bills added to House Bill 265
. “My colleagues on both sides of the aisle and I have worked on this package of CTE bills all session and I am thrilled to have that language added to my bill,” said Staats. “This legislation will improve opportunities for business-education partnerships that will provide family-sustaining jobs for our graduates and the workforce needed to attract job creators to the Commonwealth.”
The CTE legislation would establish an online career resource center; inventory existing workforce development programs that emphasize business-education partnerships and develop best practices to enhance these efforts; permit occupational advisory committees to be established at Intermediate Units (IU) to ensure that industry standards are properly integrated into instructional programming; and create a grant program that encourages employers to establish apprenticeships to enable students to learn a trade and ultimately provides employers with a trained workforce.
“My bill would also help students and families avoid spending thousands of dollars on coursework and materials only to learn that credits will not transfer to certain institutions,” said Staats. “House Bill 265 would expand an existing online database, maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), to provide students with information on the transfer policies between public schools and institutions of higher education.
“By providing our students with the knowledge they need to make informed decisions about their educational options, they can plan where courses, programs, certificates and diplomas transfer among public schools, colleges and universities before committing their time and precious resources.”
Under current law, PDE maintains an electronic database and portal that displays articulation agreements entered into by community colleges, institutions in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and other institutions that choose to participate. Staats’ bill would require all public schools – including school districts, intermediate units, vocational-technical schools, charter schools and cyber charter schools – as well as Northern Pennsylvania Regional College, state-related institutions, and Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology, to submit articulation agreements to PDE for inclusion in the searchable database.
Following a unanimous vote today in the House, the bill is now headed back to the Senate on concurrence.
Representative Craig Staats
145th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Donna Pinkham