In January, Governor Bentley announced the formation of a new College and Career Ready Task Force, bringing together leaders of K-12 education, two-year and four-year colleges, and the business community. The task force is charged with strengthening the education pipeline for Alabama students in order to increase successful entry into college and the workforce.
“In our roles as educators and business and industry leaders, tasked with preparing the people of this state to go out and be successful in the workforce, it is crucial that the right people are at the table having the right conversation,” said Mark Heinrich, chancellor of the Alabama Community College System. (Source: AL.com, 1-15-13)
Heinrich said he has dreamed of the day K-12, higher education and the business community sat at the same table.
The governor clarified during his announcement that the task force is not a “bureaucracy,” but a body of professionals focused on the same goal – preparing all Alabama students successfully for college and careers. This goal is also aligned with the State Department of Education’s strategic Plan 2020.
State Superintendent Dr. Tommy Bice also voiced his support of the governor’s task force, stating that the focus on college and career readiness “provides a seamless transition for students,” as they pursue their individual career interests.
According to Speaker Mike Hubbard, who will serve as a co-chair, the task force will “establish an open line of communication between the drivers of the economy — the business and education communities.”
Click here to read full article from AL.com.
The task force is similar to the Education Investment Council concept that A+ described in its recent policy brief publication and AL.com op-ed. Previously, there was no one in the state of Alabama paying attention to the entire education pipeline, from pre-k through colleges and universities and into the workforce. This task force is a step in the right direction for Alabama.