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Exec. Order Aims to Improve Worker Education

Credit: Whitehouse.gov

By Roland Murphy for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Late last week President Donald Trump issued an executive order intended to advance opportunities in education, training and program transparency for American workers.

The order establishes the National Council for the American Worker and the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board, which are tasked with solving, “the new challenges faced by American workers,” according to the White House announcement.

Among other things, the Council will develop a strategy to address workforce issues, work to raise awareness about concerns such as the skills crisis and the importance of STEM education, develop a plan to recognize companies that excel in workplace education/training/investment, expand apprenticeships and increase investment in training workers, and develop a course of action for transparency in education and job training programs.

“The Board will draw upon the knowledge and expertise of leaders from outside government to develop recommendations on how to improve our country’s education and training,” the announcement stated. It is also intended to encourage, “the private, education, and not-for-profit sectors to commit to investing in and re-training their workers.”

As part of the process, the administration is asking companies, trade groups and foundations to formally sign a pledge to invest in workers and students.

The announcement cites data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics stating the current labor pool is insufficient to meet the demand for workers in the currently growing economy. “The labor market is tight, with an estimated 6.6 million job vacancies presumably caused, in part, by a lack of workers with the required skillsets,” the announcement states.

It goes on to say, “Reforming Federal policies to promote life-long skills training will be essential to closing the ever-widening skills gap caused by technological advancement.”

The entire announcement is available here.

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