Tech education groups seeks greater funding

A coalition of groups said technical education needs more funding.
A coalition of groups said technical education needs more funding.
Two organizations devoted to advancing technical career education said today that the Obama administration's level funding for technical education programs does not go far enough to meet growing needs.

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) and the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) issued a joint statement today saying "a stronger investment is needed" than the fiscal year 2010 budget of $1.3 billion for funding career and technical education programs.

A consortium of groups including agriculture equipment manufacturers and other manufacturing and high-tech industries signed onto the letter requesting additional funding to support secondary and postsecondary career and technical education (CTE) programs.

The consortium said enrollment in CTE has increased by 6 million since 1999, with approximately 15.6 million students taking CTE courses during the 2006-07 school year.

With increased funding from the federal budget, schools could utilize the money to enhance their programs of study, strengthen the integration of academics and CTE and create a stronger accountability system, the groups said.

"Career and technical education plays a critical role in improving and growing the U.S. economy through secondary, postsecondary and workforce level training leading to high-skill, high-demand and high-need jobs," said ACTE executive director Janet Bray.