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Idaho Boosts Workforce Development in Midst of Population Boom



With more people pursuing their personal and professional dreams in Idaho, Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter has signed two bills reinforcing strong alignment between K-12 education and workforce demand.

In his final legislative session, Governor Otter championed a workforce development package that positively affects current and future Idahoans for years to come. As the fastest growing state in the union, Idaho is poised for success.

“Employers, economic development leaders and educators agree that educating and training more skilled workers is crucial to continuing the kind of growth that Idaho has been enjoying in recent years. We need thousands of additional employees who are prepared for the increasingly technical jobs being created by Idaho businesses. That means investing both in academics and workforce training as we pursue our K-through-Career approach to education excellence.”

C.L. “Butch” Otter, Governor of Idaho

Governor Otter convened his Workforce Development Task Force last year, bringing educators and business leaders together to develop recommendations that align education and job training with the needs of Idaho businesses. His leadership helped to ensure Idaho students have a path to high-paying jobs, a fulfilling career and the opportunity to achieve the American dream. Idaho businesses now have homegrown talent pipelines that help them find the employees they need to drive Idaho’s economic engine into the future.

House Bill 432, signed by Governor Otter last week, made important changes to allow the Workforce Development Council to be more responsive to the needs of employers.

Senate Bill 1222, signed by Governor Otter in February, expanded funding for high-performing, career and technical education programs in grades 9-12 in the areas of business management, engineering, technology, health sciences and other high-demand fields.

“As the fastest growing state in the nation, these bills forge a greater nexus between student skill acquisition and employer needs, including a funding incentive for high-performing career and technical education programs at Idaho schools. We applaud the hard work of Governor Otter and so many other policymakers for their tireless efforts to help Idaho’s students earn the skills they need to succeed at career and life.”

Patricia Levesque, Chief Excecutive Officer, Foundation for Excellence in Education

For more information on the value of College and Career Pathways, visit ExcelinEd’s policy library.