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The Effects of School-to-Career Programs on Postsecondary Enrollment and Employment

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Publication Date: May 2004

Publisher(s): Public Policy Institute of California

Author(s): David Neumark

Funder(s): Public Policy Institute of California

Funder(s): Public Policy Institute of California

Topic: Education (Education policy and planning)

Type: Report

Coverage: California

Abstract:

School-to-career (STC) programs, which integrate academic education and vocational skills training, seek to improve the transitions of young people from school to work. The School-to-Work Opportunities Act (STWOA), passed by Congress in 1994, provided more than $1.5 billion over a five-year period to support increased school-to-work activities in the nation’s public high schools. However, after its initial five years, STWOA was not reauthorized. In this report, the author uses a national dataset to measure the success of various programs (including Tech Prep and Career Academies, which differ from the STWOA activities). He finds that certain STC activities do promote postsecondary enrollment and employment and that a case can be made for funding the types of programs supported by STWOA. However, he also notes that there is a pressing need for a serious evaluation of the effectiveness of the specific activities remaining in California and of any that might arise in the future.