Biden-Harris Administration announces $25m in grant awards to advance Career connected high schools

Special to the Banner-News

The Biden-Harris Administration today is announcing 19 new grant awards totaling $25 million through the first-ever Perkins Innovation and Modernization, Career Connected High Schools (CCHS) grant program.

This investment, issued by the U.S. Department of Education (Department), builds the capacity of education and workforce systems to partner with business and industry, to develop new high-quality career-connected high school programs for more students. Grantees will leverage four evidence-based strategies, or "keys," to help students in unlocking career success including: providing postsecondary education and career guidance; increasing access to dual or concurrent enrollment programs; increasing work-based learning opportunities; and providing industry-recognized credentials.

"President Biden understands that it's time to invest in career-connected learning that will better prepare our young people for exciting careers and family-sustaining jobs in today's most in-demand fields," said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. "We can transform the American high school experience and raise the bar for student engagement, achievement, and career-readiness in this country by providing all students with access to dual enrollment classes, work-based learning, industry credentials, and comprehensive career advising. The Biden-Harris Administration is going to keep on fighting to provide every student in every community with career-connected learning."

The grant is part of the Department's Raise the Bar: Unlocking Career Success initiative, aimed at helping young Americans access good-paying jobs created by President Biden's Investing in America through seeding and scaling promising models of innovation. Secretary Cardona will highlight this announcement during a visit to DC Public Schools' Advanced Technical Center in Washington, DC today. The CCHS grant program is the first in the Department's history intended to build capacity and coordination among secondary and postsecondary education, workforce development systems, and other community partners to expand access to career-connected high school programs for more students, with a focus on increasing access to high-quality pathways for underserved students.

The Department received more than 160 eligible applications from 43 states and the District of Columbia, requesting more than $850 million to implement comprehensive career-connected learning projects.

The Arkansas Department of Education recieved $1,106,200.

For more information about each program's awards, please visit the Innovation and Modernization Program webpage here, and consult the Unlocking Career Success website for more information on career-connected learning.

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