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Built to Last: Why Skills Matter for Long-Run Success in Welfare Reform

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This review of recent research on welfare-to-work strategies shows that the most successful programs have focused on employment but made substantial use of education and training. In particular, the postsecondary education and training appear to be key to obtaining higher-paying jobs. [BREAK This report has important implications for the current debate over reauthorization of the federal welfare program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). The findings suggest that Congress should encourage states to include quality education and training services in welfare-to-work programs and allow sufficient time for recipients to complete both basic education and skill training.