Skip to main content

Senate HELP Committee Invites WIOA Testimony

On Wednesday, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee invited testimony from experts on the reauthorization of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Taylor White, Director of the Partnership to Advance Youth Apprenticeship & Postsecondary Pathways for Youth spoke to the urgency of addressing the problems of disconnected youth (Opportunity Youth). White explained that persistent inequities in education and work systems limit access and opportunity based on gender, income, disability, citizenship status, and race, with the highest disconnection rates among Native Americans, Black youth, and Latinx youth. Young men are more likely to be disconnected than young women, and Opportunity Youth are significantly more likely to have grown up in poverty or have a disability. To reduce disconnection, barriers to cooperation with other youth-serving systems should be reduced, and service delivery coordination improved. Greater cooperation across agencies, such as career and technical education (CTE) systems, can be achieved through shared federal plans, aligned performance metrics, and incentives. Congress should require workforce boards to include CTE leadership and provide resources for blending federal funding for youth programs. Expanding supportive services, including mental health, is essential to meet the needs of today's youth.


To listen to the hearing and to read testimony, click here.

Posted:  14 June, 2024

© 2024 Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). All rights reserved.