Budget Package Boosts Funding for Adult Education and Career Training Programs
The 2015-16 budget agreement provides nearly $1.5 billion to adult education and career training programs. The spending plan adopts the Governor’s proposals to provide $500 million to establish a new adult education block grant and $900 million – total between 2015-16 and 2017-18 – for a new competitive grant program to support career training. Specifically, the budget agreement:
- Provides $500.0 million in Proposition 98 funding for a new block grant to support adult education. The Adult Education Block Grant Program will be administered by the CCC Chancellor and the Superintendent of Public Instruction, who will approve consortia of adult education providers that may consist of any combination of CCC districts, school districts, and/or COEs. These consortia will coordinate services regionally and must use block grant funds to support specific adult education programs, including workforce preparation for immigrants, education programs for adults with disabilities, and career technical education (CTE) programs. In 2015-16, up to $375 million of the $500 million in block grant funds is earmarked for school districts and COEs to match the amounts they have been required to spend on adult education since 2012-13, due to a maintenance-of-effort provision included in the state’s Local Control Funding Formula. If total adult education spending by school districts and COEs exceeds $375 million in 2015-16, their allocations will be prorated. The remainder of the $500 million will be allocated to regional consortia based on each region’s adult education needs. The consortia will allocate any dollars they receive to adult education providers based on regional consortia plans.
- Provides $400.0 million in one-time 2015-16 Proposition 98 funding for a new CTE Incentive Grant Program. The budget agreement adopts the Governor’s proposal to provide additional one-time funding of $300 million in 2016-17 and $200 million in 2017-18 – a total of $900 million over a three-year period – to fund a new competitive CTE grant program for K-12 school districts, COEs, charter schools, and Regional Occupation Centers and Programs (ROCPs). The budget agreement also adopts the Governor’s May Revision proposals to require local school districts to match CTE incentive grant dollars and to eliminate the Career Pathways Trust Program from the list of allowable sources for local matching funds. Funding for CTE grants would be divided into three separate pools to allow applicants to compete against one another based on their number of students in grades 7 through 12. Applicants with an average daily attendance (ADA) of more than 550 students in these grades would compete for 88 percent of the funding, applicants with ADA of more than 140 up to 550 in grades 7 through 12 would compete for 8 percent of the funds, and 4 percent of the funds would be allocated to a separate pool for applicants with less than or equal to 140 ADA. The budget agreement requires the California Department of Education and the State Board of Education to prioritize funding for applicants if they are establishing a new CTE program, serving groups of students with high dropout rates, located in areas with high unemployment rates, or serving disadvantaged students.
- Provides $48.0 million to extend the CTE Pathways Program through 2015-16. The budget agreement allocates one-time funding to this competitive grant program for K-12 schools, community colleges, and ROCPs to develop, enhance, and expand CTE programs.
- Increases funding by $29.1 million for expansion of apprenticeship programs. The budget agreement provides $14.1 million to increase funding for existing apprenticeship programs and $15 million to create apprenticeship demonstration projects that meet local labor market demands in new and emerging industries.