Friday, December 9, 2011

The jobs are coming; now we need the workers

Thousands of Boeing jobs will stay in Washington thanks to a deal struck by Boeing and union leaders last week, then ratified by workers on Wednesday.  It’s an exciting development for the state, as the 737 MAX orders have piled up to 700 airplanes already.  Some big orders and more reasons to celebrate might also be in the works.

With all those good jobs staying and coming into the state, House Democrats want to ensure they are filled by Washington workers.  So we are moving quickly to help train workers for aerospace jobs now and in the future.  Within the next week, we will hear these bills:
  • Provide $1M for the Aerospace Training Student Loan Program The loan program was created to break down financial barriers for workers to receive training for aerospace jobs.  With this investment, loans will train workers for jobs ready now, then be paid back into the fund to keep connecting workers with jobs.
  • Establish Aerospace Training Pathways in Middle and High School Building on the last year’s Launch Year legislation, this will encourage school districts to adopt Project Lead the Way, an innovative Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) curriculum, that can combine with aerospace technical courses. 
  • Strengthen Teacher Math and Science Standards More rigorous math and science standards for students entering teacher preparation programs will be set by the Professional Educator Standards Board.
  • Give Higher Education Credit Equivalencies Just as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses in high school become college credit, Project Lead the Way courses would have credit equivalencies at our community, technical and four-year universities. 
Here is a press release with more information.

To read this blog in Spanish, click here.