In today’s bitterly divided Congress, legislation to bolster career-connected learning (CCL) is attracting unusually high levels of bipartisan support. With Republicans narrowly controlling the House and Democrats narrowly controlling the Senate, bipartisan bills are the only ones that can pass.
The brief then moves to consideration of what is often called Workforce Pell or Short-Term Pell legislation. Although other types of career and technical education bills are being discussed, Workforce Pell currently has the broadest bipartisan backing and greatest prospects for passing. Bills in this category would provide greater financial support for Americans enrolling in recognized CCL programs by making them eligible for Pell Grants. These grants are the most common source of federal support for education beyond high school and do not need to be repaid.
The review of Workforce Pell legislation starts with the general arguments for and against it. We conclude with a review of the case for and against the most important Short-Term Pell specifics where there is not yet agreement in Congress.