Strong Workforce Program and K12
Five years ago, the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO) partnered with the California Department of Education (CDE) to introduce the K12 Strong Workforce Program (K12 SWP), effectively connecting Career Technical Education (CTE) programs at the K12 level to California community colleges which has led to seamless pathways for California students to complete certificates and degrees in high-growth industries.
Through the SWP pathways program, K12 institutions receive support in developing and implementing high-quality K14 CTE course sequences, programs, and pathways that facilitate career exploration and the selection of learning opportunities that lead to careers.
Each year, the California community colleges’ K12 SWP program appropriates $150,000,000 in annual ongoing career education funding to strengthen the pathways for students from secondary to post-secondary education across all of California. Examples include building foundational career path skills and knowledge, enabling a seamless and successful transition from secondary to postsecondary education within the same or related career paths, certificate/degree completions, transfers to 4-year institutions, and preparing students upon completion of education to enter high-growth occupations which pay a living wage.
Learn more about how local education agencies (LEAs) are partnering with community colleges for K12 Strong Workforce Program funding at https://losangelesrc.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/Overview-K12-Strong-Workforce-Program-082019.pdf
K12 SWP Impact in LA County
In the first three rounds of funding, $70,043,329 were allocated to 115 projects in LA County. In each year of funding, almost 40% of students from institutions awarded K12 SWP funding enrolled in at least one CTE course, benefiting 682,865 students over the three rounds.
Through these funded programs, K12 students across the county have been expanding their knowledge of education and career pathways, particularly in high-growth industry sectors in the region.
Lynwood Unified School District, for example, supports 14,000 students, partnered with Microsoft’s Technology Education and Learning Support program to increase access to computer science instruction and to prepare students for these high-wage, high-growth jobs. This collaboration has empowered LUSD’s underserved students to excel in AP computer science exams, pursue careers in programming, and join Compton College’s Apple Coding program. Already, more than 120 students have benefited from this partnership.
At the Centinela Valley Union High School District (CVUHSD), K12 SWP funding has supported school faculty and counselors with training and additional infrastructure. Since the pandemic, CVUHSD has been working to bolster dual enrollment courses with El Camino College. Together, the District and El Camino College developed and implemented a “Dual Enrollment Faculty Success” program where high school instructors collaborated on both curriculum and student support alignment. In addition to funding a college counselor to meet with students on their separate high school campuses every week throughout the school year, the district also implemented a “Dual Enrollment Success Camp” to engage dual enrollment students and develop their skills and habits that promote dual enrollment success.
Explore K-12 SWP funded projects in the region at https://losangelesrc.org/k12-projects/
View LARC’s annual reports on SWP and K12 SWP projects in LA County at https://losangelesrc.org/about/regional-report-annual-updates/