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Malloy Revives Workforce-Training Partnership

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’P-20 Council’ seeks to address skills gap for entry-level workers

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has signed an executive order revitalizing the objectives and updating the membership of the state’s P-20 Council to strengthen the state’s public-education system so that students are prepared with the skills needed in the job market.

Originally created in 2009 by then-Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s Executive Order No. 2A, the P-20 Council is a team of stakeholders comprising representatives from there sectors: early childhood education; elementary and secondary schools; higher education; and the workforce and business community. The group charges representatives from those sectors with collaborating on a public-policy framework that integrates components of the state’s education system with economic and workforce development opportunities.

“Connecticut’s future economic success depends on a well educated workforce,” Malloy said in announcing the initiative. “Beginning with early childhood education and continuing through a strong postsecondary education, students must learn the skills they need to compete so we can meet the needs of employers who are looking to grow their businesses or relocate.

“The P-20 Council is an important component of how our state can provide a comprehensive education system that prepares all students to succeed,” Malloy added. “Through today’s executive order, we are giving the council a stronger voice and a more influential role in the policymaking process.”

Malloy’s Executive Order No. 20 restructures the group to reflect and capitalize on recent state agency reorganizations and reinvigorates its functions following the enactment of the major bipartisan education reform initiatives the legislature passed and the governor signed into law in May.

“Last year on my Jobs Tour, I heard time and again from employers about the need for skilled labor, particularly in high-skilled manufacturing,” said Malloy. “At a time when many of our residents are looking for work, it’s frustrating to know that positions are available, but we don’t always have the workforce necessary to fill them.

“This is about creating opportunities for existing Connecticut companies to expand, attracting new employers, and growing good-paying jobs with good benefits for our state’s residents,” he added.

Malloy is scheduled to convene the reconstituted group’s initial meeting on November 30.