Magazine article Techniques

McNeil Introduces Administration's Bill

Magazine article Techniques

McNeil Introduces Administration's Bill

Article excerpt

U.S. Assistant Secretary for Adult and Vocational Education Trish McNeil presented her office's 1998 budget request to the education, labor and human services subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee recently, saying she hopes to have a vocational education bill to Congress by the end of April. Even if Congress does not pass a bill to replace the expired Carl C. Perkins Act by the end of 1997, she asked that the Appropriations Committee continue to fund vocational education under the old law.

McNeil said the administration's bill, which had not yet been drafted at press time, would:

* streamline vocational education programs, eliminating about 20 of 23 vocational education set asides.

* make states accountable for results. The Office of Vocational and Adult Education plans to work with state and local officials to develop consistent data standards and definitions, McNeil said. Under the current system, states do not even define a "vocational student" in the same way.

* focus resources on "the core best practices that we know through research have achieved results."

Subcommittee chairman Representative John Porter (R-IL) returned to the second goal, saying he hoped vocational education and school-to-work programs would be measured by their placement rates, not only by enrollment.

"While it's nice to know how many students are involved or how many schools are involved... what we're really interested in is how many students get jobs and keep them. The bottomline results," Porter said. …

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