Scott Statement on Trump Administration’s Apprenticeship Initiative

WASHINGTON –  Education and the Workforce Committee Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after President Trump signed an executive order that would eliminate oversight of apprenticeship programs:

“Today’s executive order from the Trump Administration is further evidence of broad bipartisan support for expanding access to apprenticeship programs. Registered apprenticeship programs offer on-the-job training and skills development that results in a nationally-recognized credential. They not only empower students and workers to earn while they learn but also provide employers with the assurance that program participants possess the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed. We must commit to making these programs more accessible to workers and industry partners while also maintaining important quality standards. 

“While I join the President in calling for the expansion of such programs, the federal government must ensure that we maintain meaningful accountability for program quality and outcomes. Unfortunately, parts of the Executive Order fail to maintain necessary quality controls and accountability requirements, while also directing the elimination of key workforce development programs. Furthermore, the expansion of opportunities as called for in the Executive Order will obviously require additional funding. Yet the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2018 budget proposal includes significant cuts to the very programs that are vital to preparing an educated and skilled workforce.

“That’s why Congress must pass a federal budget that fully funds education and workforce development programs. Congress must also pass legislation, such as the Leveraging Effective Apprenticeships to Rebuild National Skills (LEARNS) Act; expand high-quality career and technical education programs; and ensure access to an affordable, public higher education system that is responsive to the needs of students and families. These responsible solutions would put Americans back to work and build a highly skilled workforce to meet the needs of our changing economy.” 

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