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Secondary Student Industry Recognized Credential Pilot Project

View IRC application here: https://labor.vermont.gov/document/secondary-student-irc-pilot-application


Sec. 13. Act 189 (2022)

SECONDARY STUDENT INDUSTRY-RECOGNIZED CREDENTIAL PILOT PROJECT

  1. Pilot Project creation. The Department of Labor, in consultation with the Agency of Education, shall design and implement the Secondary Student Industry-Recognized Credential Pilot Project to provide funding for an eligible secondary student to take an eligible adult career and technical education course.
  2. Eligible courses. A course is eligible for the Pilot Project if it is:
    1. offered at a regional CTE center, as defined in 16 V.S.A. § 1522(4), and qualifies as adult career technical education or postsecondary career technical education, as defined in 16 V.S.A. § 1522(11) and (12);
    2. offered during the summer, evening or weekend while secondary school is in session or during the summer; and
    3.  included as an element of the student’s personalized learning plan and reasonably related to the student’s career goals.
  3. Eligible student. A student is eligible for the Pilot Project if:
    1.  the student is a Vermont resident attending a Vermont public school or an independent secondary school that is eligible for public funding;
    2.  the student has completed grade 11 and has not received a high school diploma; and
    3. the student’s secondary school and the regional CTE center determine that the student:
      1.  is prepared to succeed in the course;
      2. meets the prerequisites for the course; and
      3. has exhausted other sources of available funding prior to submitting an application. 
  4. Administration.
    1. Not later than 30 days after the effective date of this section, the Department of Labor, in consultation with the Agency of Education, shall develop and make available an application for funding that includes:
      1. student’s enrollment status;
      2. course information;
      3. a copy of the student’s personalized learning plan;
      4. attestation that the secondary and adult career technical education programs find the program of study appropriate for the student;
      5. description of federal and local funding sources that were explored but insufficient or unavailable for use by the student; and
      6. other information the Department requires to determine eligibility.
    2. A student’s secondary school shall timely complete and submit an application to the Department of Labor on behalf of the student.
    3. The Department of Labor shall:
      1. Review the application and, if appropriate, meet with the student to determine eligibility for existing federal and State programs, including Title I Youth (in-school) and the Vermont Youth Employment Program; and
      2. Provide a copy of the application to the Agency of Education, which shall determine whether Agency funding is available and notify the Department of its determination within 10 business days.
    4. The Department shall provide funding for the tuition cost for one course to eligible students on a first-come, first-served basis:
      1. from State or federal sources that are available through the Department or Agency; or
      2. if funding is unavailable from those sources, from the amounts available in the Department’s fiscal year 2023 budget, not to exceed $100,000.00.
    5. For students who meet annual low-income qualifications under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, the Department may provide funds to purchase books, supplies, exam fees, and equipment.
    6. A regional CTE center shall not receive more than $20,000.00 through the program in each fiscal year.
  5. Regional CTE center report. The Department of Labor shall require a report from each regional CTE center providing information to support the Department’s reporting requirements in subsections (f) and (g) of this section.  
  6. Interim Report. The Department of Labor and Agency of Education shall report to the House and Senate Committees on Education, the House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development, and the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs on or before the January 15, 2023 regarding the use of funds, including data relating to student circumstances, levels of participation, and how local school districts are able or unable to meet the career preparation and training needs of secondary students using the program.
  7.  Final report. The Department of Labor and Agency of Education shall report to the House and Senate Committees on Education, the House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development, the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs, the House Committee on Ways and Means, and the Senate Committee on Finance within 45 days following the end of the fiscal year or exhaustion of funds, whichever comes first, regarding the use of funds, including data relating to the number of participants, student circumstances, levels of participation, what certifications were issued, how local school districts are able or unable to meet the career preparation and training needs of secondary students using the program, and recommendations on how to address gaps in access and funding for secondary students seeking professional certifications not offered through the secondary education system.