Ms. Regina Suitt
Region 7 and Public Policy Chair (2012–2015)
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The U.S. Department of Education is pleased to announce the release of a new report, Making Skills Everyone's Business: A Call to Transform Adult Learning in the United States.
February may have been the min-storm before the maelstrom. The major news of the month—the struggle in Congress to fund the the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)—was finally resolved in March. The politics of funding the Department suggest that the rest of the year will be unsettled.. Click here to read the State Director's Association Government Relations report.
I wanted to revisit and draw your attention to a blog posted a few weeks ago. Education Secretary Duncan and Labor Secretary Perez wrote to a joint blog post. Empowering Today's Economy by Training Tomorrow's Workforce. The post highlights the importance of business engagement and partnership as we begin implementation on the Workforce innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and directly encourages the business community to get involved and provide ideas.
WIOA gives businesses an unprecedented opportunity to partner with adult education programs, workforce development boards, school districts, community colleges, nonprofits and others nationwide to build career pathways for frontline and other workers, and to drive and support regional sector strategies that meet the workforce needs of employers. As Secretaries Duncan and Perez shared, we want to hear from you Please share the blog post link widely with your networks and send your ideas and comments to AskAEFLA@ed.gov. Together, we can make skills everyone's business.
The House and Senate reached an agreement for a nearly $1.1 trillion FY 2015 spending bill on Saturday, December 13th . It will fund most of the federal government through September 30, 2015. There was one exception and several controversial riders attached to it. The bill now goes to the President.
COABE's Public Policy Committee has been active on behalf of the field by engaging in the following activities:
• Feedback was submitted on behalf of COABE for the Secretary of Education's request for formal comments on proposed discretionary grant priorities. Read the letter here.
• An Action Alert was sent to the Contact Network asking for program leaders and state organizations to thank the legislators who voted for WIOA.
• Information about new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) and the Vice President's Job-Driven Training Report along with links to stay informed including the Department of Labor's and Education's WIOA web and email resources was posted on the COABE website here.
Take advantage of the new WIOA legislation to educate your policymakers at the local, state and national level.
2015 House and Senate Recess Schedule
During Recess periods, Members of Congress are likely to be home. It is an excellent time for them to visit local programs and meet students. Most Members do not know what you do and the success and impact you have. If you show them, we are more likely to get their support. Please forward this to your local programs and encourage them to plan ahead for a visit.