(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt to connect students who do not finish high school with career training and work opportunities through their local Workforce Investment Board was released Thursday by the Assembly Education Committee.
“There are many reasons why students decide to drop out of school. No one benefits if we allow them to lag behind. Not them, not the communities they live in, and certainly not the state,” said Lampitt, who chairs the committee. “By creating this link, we can help provide young adults who did not finish high school with career training and job opportunities so they too can be successful.”
The bill (A-1845) would require school districts that include any of the grades 9 through 12 to provide to the local Workforce Investment Board, a list of students enrolled in those grades who left school prior to graduation, and did not indicate an intention to complete high school. The list would have to be forwarded to the local board by February 15 and July 15 of each school year.
Workforce Investment Boards direct federal, state, and local funding to workforce development programs. They also oversee the One-Stop Career Centers, where job seekers can get employment information and find out about career development training opportunities.
The provisions of this bill mirror a Dec. 6, 2000 directive from the Department of Education to school districts. The directive was based on a 1988 Attorney General’s opinion that Workforce Investment Boards have a right to access this information. This information is not being routinely provided by school districts to these boards. In light of the occupational skills training and educational programs offered through the Workforce Investment Boards, this is critical information that will assist the boards in connecting out-of-school youth to training and employment opportunities.