Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham introduced his first piece of legislation Friday, a bipartisan bill to improve the state’s Career Technical Education system, following through on a campaign pledge to support vocational training programs.
Assembly Bill 445 seeks to create a permanent $300 million Career Technical Education (CTE) fund to help K-12 schools “offer modernized vocational classes for California’s rapidly changing job market,” a news release from Cunningham’s office said.
The bill also would increase funding for academic coursework required by certain apprenticeship programs. The legislation would allow schools to update technology, expand course offerings, and overcome language barriers by re-prioritizing education funding without incurring additional costs to the state, according to the release.
The bill is co-authored by Assemblyman Patrick O’Donnell, a Democrat from Long Beach. Cunningham is a Republican representing the 35th Assembly District that encompasses San Luis Obispo County and northern Santa Barbara County.
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“By giving kids the tools they need to train and prepare for good-paying jobs, we can help lift countless Californians out of poverty and into the middle class,” Cunningham said. “CTE opens doors for so many kids and builds a bridge between schools and the workforce.”