Kentucky Political News Headlines

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

BR Sub on Education

The Budget Review Subcommittee on Education met in Frankfort and heard testimony on Career & Technical Education (CTE) efforts across the Education Cabinet, KDE, CPE & KCTCS. My notes are below along with links to the slides.

Education Cabinet
Secretary Ramsey, Deputy Secretary Nemes, and Commissioner Gordon updated the committee on key initiatives. Their slides are available HERE
- 4200 students have received $6.8 million in Work Ready Scholarship
- Dual Credit Scholarship - The data was from 2015-16, so not very helpful on recent trends, but about $15 million has been spent on the program. 
- Work Ready Skills $100 million bond fund - Monies have been spent, now in monitoring phase - $220 million total ($98 million state dollars and $121 million in matching funds locally) - Expected to increase training capacity for more than 20,000 employees
- Apprenticeships - $1.5 million in federal funds to expand apprenticeships, 251 programs serving 3,391 apprentices
- KY TECH (Get from slides)
- KY Career Center (Get from slides)
- KYStats Funding - Decreasing by 45% in December 2019. Funded mostly by grants $5.9 of 6.8 million. 

Commissioner Lewis and Associate Commissioner David Horseman gave an overview of KDE initiatives and budget priorities related to CTE. Slides are available HERE and my notes are below:
- Gave an overview of New Skills for Youth as it is an attempt to encourage districts to share resources. Regional partnerships are critical particularly in CTE, because resources are scarce and employers recruit larger areas than one school district 
- Employer engagement Strategies were discussed, but no mention of the work on essential skills except that they were soliciting the skills from the Workforce Investment Boards.
- 20 career pathways that contain general ed as well as technical training, most are grades 9-14 and some are 9-16
- CTE Task Force - Concerns raised by KDE
1. State vs Local centers creates issues on funding and governance
2. Lack of Funding for High Demand CTE programs
3. Funding formula for Local Centers - Statutory funding formula not used

Commissioner Lewis spoke about significant funding need in CTE. Gave an example of Ohio CTE, half the number of technical high schools, but double the students and much better quality. Seems to be saying that we need fewer technical schools and better collaboration between state and local districts

Sen. Wilson in remarks seems to be saying that the CTE Task Force work will be to unify system, fund the system, and deal with qualified teachers of CTE courses. I would expect this will be a big issue next session 

CPE President Thompson & KCTCS President Jay Box spoke on how to improve CTE in postsecondary education. 

Thompson shared the following key points in his opening remarks:
-  CPE is asking the the credential we are offering producing value for student and needed by business
- Trying to build employability skills into fabric of programs
- Need to consider rebranding work ready scholarship to the "free college" program that it is
- Need to build capacity with underserved students
- Need to invest in higher ed, but need to do it strategically and in results 

President Box utilized these slides and made the following key points:
- He opened giving examples of several ways KCTCS has been partnering with the business community, specifically the KY Association of Manufacturers with KY FAME and their Go Pro in Manufacturing Signing Day.
- Have changed their program mix to be more focused on students getting certificates and not necessarily transferring to 4 year institutions. From 55% to 45% in terns of transfer students and 45%-55% for students not transferring and going direct to the workforce. Sees that trend continuing.
- KCTCS advocated for fully funding the performance funding formula and to increase dual credit rate reimbursement for KCTCS.