White House moves on job training

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The White House is slated Tuesday to announce a number of job training reforms and President Obama plans to sign a bipartisan bill to improve federal job training programs.  

Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenClinton urged to go liberal with vice presidential pick Biden will host cancer research summit in DC Reid throws wrench into Clinton vice presidential picks MORE will also release a report on job training that Obama commissioned earlier this year, "Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity."

More than $1.4 billion in job training grants will now be subject to a new "job-driven" checklist developed by the administration. Another $100 million is being made available to expand apprenticeships in the United States.  

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All federal job training programs will now be required to track the success of the programs in helping people to find a job. The administration will also let agencies test a number of pilot programs. 

An example includes the Department of Education waving some federal student aid rules to allow universities to award degrees based on skill rather than credits.  

"We don't need to reinvent the wheel here," a senior administration official said.  "This is about identifying models that work and scaling them throughout the country."  

Obama, during his State of the Union address in January, tasked Biden to head up broad reforms to job training in the United States. The goal was to provide training in-demand jobs and pair people with those employers.  

"That means more on-the-job training, and more apprenticeships that set a young worker on an upward trajectory for life," Obama said at the time. "It means connecting companies to community colleges that can help design training to fill their specific needs."  

According to the administration federal job training programs serve 21 million people a year, including veterans, young people, those with disabilities and those transitioning to new careers.  

The new checklist would require job training programs to work upfront with employers, offer work-based learning, and track data among other things to help give workers a a smooth transition from training to employment.  

The White House is also slated to sign the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, a bill that marked one of the few bipartisan breakthroughs  during an election year.  

Ahead of the bill's passage, Congressional negotiators highlighted principles that guided the bill including, consolidated a number of federal programs, increases accountability metrics, focusing on in-demand jobs and lowering administrative costs.  

A senior administration officials said the bill and the administration's new actions are "complementary," they "really go hand in hand." 

Throughout the year, Biden has traveled to a number of states in an effort to scale up some successful state programs. That included a March visit to New Hampshire, the early presidential primary state. At the time, he joked he was "here about jobs, not mine." 

The vice president highlighted a few high-tech job training programs for veterans during a speech Monday at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in St. Louis, Mo. 

"Why do we have to issue 480,000 to 500,000 H1B visas — visas to allow people from other countries, which I welcome, to come to the United States to fill high-tech jobs?" he asked, noting there was a lack of qualified individuals in the United States. 

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