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Wolf’s Education, Workforce Plan Draws Bipartisan Praise (Round-Up)

By: Governor’s Office of Communications

February 07, 2018

On Tuesday, Governor Wolf delivered his budget address for the 2018-19 fiscal year. The Governor laid out a plan that advocates for workforce training to help Pennsylvanians succeed in our economy and more school funding to provide a quality education for our students. His proposal includes the first major investment in workforce development and skills training, including dedicated funding for STEM and computer science education.

“Developing a workforce that can compete and win in the 21st-century economy is the single best way to help Pennsylvania businesses grow – and attract new businesses to our commonwealth,” Governor Wolf said. “It’s also the single best thing we can do to help more of our people find better jobs – not just tomorrow, but today.

“Indeed, these aren’t just jobs, but careers – everything from welding and machining to coding and advanced manufacturing – careers that can sustain families and enrich communities.”

Here is what others are saying about the plan Governor Wolf has laid out:

  • “We are encouraged by the administration’s focus on workforce development – a key cornerstone of the PA Chamber’s mission – which will help to close the existing jobs skills gap and foster workers’ upward mobility in their careers. We look forward to continuing our work with Gov. Wolf, the General Assembly and our counterparts in the education and labor communities on this important initiative.” – Gene Barr, President of Pennsylvania Chamber (press release)
  • “Now more than ever, businesses are looking for students with technical skills, and they’re willing to hire these well-trained kids right away,” McCracken said in a statement. “That’s why these kinds of programs have always been a good investment.”​ – Dolores McCracken​, President of the Pennsylvania State Education Association (TribLive)
  • “Linking CTE with apprenticeships and job training initiatives has the potential to provide a seamless pathway for students to gain the skills they need to match business demands throughout the Commonwealth. Over the years, CTE has not seen the increases required to meet the need for highly skilled workers. The Governor’s proposal, if enacted by the General Assembly would be a welcome infusion of funds to help programs meet the needs of the workforce,” – Jamie Baxter, Education Policy Director, Allies for Children (press release)
  • “I am encouraged by the call for continued investment at every stage of education, from K-12 through higher education, as well as the fact that the budget calls for no tax increases. An investment in education is an investment in our youth and the future of the Commonwealth,” Rep. David Millard (R-109th Legislative District).
  • “We’re seeing a continued push to invest in education and workforce development, which goes hand-in-hand. Nearly 180,000 jobs have been created in the last three years. By committing to the growth of the job market, we’re not only investing in the creation of jobs for all Pennsylvanians, but also the growth of our economy,” said Rep. Ryan Bizzarro (D-3rdLegislative District).
  • “Governor Wolf offered a responsible budget and a positive vision for our Commonwealth,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said. “I thank the Governor for his willingness to invest in law enforcement and public safety.”
  • “As budget discussions commence, I plan to work to ensure that investments in education and economic development programs are at the forefront,” said Senator John Yudichak (D-14th District).
  • “I was thrilled to hear the governor’s specific commitment to career and technical education that will ultimately lead to family-sustaining jobs for people living in Luzerne County and throughout Pennsylvania,” said Rep. Gerald Mullery (D-119thDistrict).
  • The Times-Leader reports, “Rep. Karen Boback, R-Harveys Lake, said she was pleased to hear optimism and positivity from Wolf. ‘As a former educator, I share his concerns about ensuring we have a well-prepared workforce, and I do believe we need to invest in technical education,’ Boback said.”
  • “I agree with the governor that more attention needs to be placed on workforce development and career and technical education – that’s where the jobs are. I am greatly encouraged by people who want to work in technical careers and the trades,” said Rep. Donna Oberlander (R-63rd District).
  • Sen. Judy Schwank (D-11th District) said, “All of our school districts, all 18 school districts, are working together on a career education path so that we give our students so many options,” according to WFMZ News.
  • “I was happy to hear the governor recognize the need for workforce development initiatives. We continue to see students graduating with high levels of debt and a degree that is not tailored toward a local job or not graduating at all. If we want to keep some of these high-paying industries in Pennsylvania, we must have the proper training and programs available to prepare our citizens for jobs in these fields” said Rep. Jim Christiana (R-15th Legislative District).
  • “In the governor’s final budget address of his term, he called for an increase in education funding for basic education, special education Pre-K Counts and Head Start. Allotting additional money for education without burdening Commonwealth taxpayers is certainly positive, and Pennsylvania students could further benefit from a shale tax,” said Rep. Jamie Santora (R-163rd Legislative District).
  • “He is continuing to make children a priority by asking for increases in basic, special and pre-K education. He’s helping people with autism and intellectual disabilities get state services sooner. And, he’s asking for the one tax increase that an overwhelming majority of Pennsylvanians want,” said Rep. Joe Markosek (D-25th Legislative District).

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