KEEPING WORKFORCE RELEVANT
FUNDING ISN’T KEEPING PACE WITH DEMAND
Despite bipartisan support, federal funding in key workforce and education programming has declined by $400 million since 2010. The number of individuals in training has declined as a result. We need to restore these investments in skills to build our economy and create economic opportunity.
LOCAL TALENT DEVELOPMENT WORKS
As experts in local talent development, conveners of local businesses, economic development, education, community stakeholders and system partners; neutral brokers of workforce services; primary investors in workforce development; and evaluators of workforce services; Local Workforce Boards needs to be funded.
INVESTMENT IN OREGON’S WORKFORCE SUPPORT GENERATIONS OF ECONOMIC STABILITY
Middle-skill jobs—jobs that require more than a high school diploma but not a four-year degree—make up 54% of jobs in the U.S. economy, but only 44% of U.S. workers are trained at the middle-skill level. For individuals who are unemployed or in low-wage jobs, education and training can provide an opportunity to move into family supporting middle-skill jobs. 36 million U.S. adults—including 24 million currently in the workforce—lack the foundational literacy and numeracy skills to enter middle-skill training and obtain well-paying jobs.
Students, employers, educators, and investors want to see data showing outcomes of programs in order to assess effectiveness of education and training programs. To do this we need consistent data. With incomplete data, policymakers, educators, and employers can’t make informed choices.
Improving infrastructure is a large body of work, but it is essential to stay informed and relevant in this time of great technological advancement. We must start now.
- Conduct analysis of systems capacity and program responsibilities to create a clearer understanding for policy makers of the scope of need.
- Quantify the cost of duplicity of: staff work, services to customers, and agency processes.
- Set expectations that empower agencies and departments to be innovative—to lift internal restrictions that impede their ability to share data with other stakeholders.
- Hold state agencies accountable to continually improving allocation of resources for data.
State-funded programs for youth summer employment projects, as well as increased resources for paid internships, can help more effectively connect young people to education, training and work—filling the pipeline with the qualified, young workers employers need.
In addition to the 113 private-sector businesses that lead Oregon’s Local Workforce Development Boards, LWBs engage with 927 businesses in high-growth, living-wage occupations and industries in local communities as part of state-funded sector work.