[Page H719]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]


  (Mr. THOMPSON of Pennsylvania asked and was given permission to 
address the House for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
  Mr. THOMPSON of Pennsylvania. Madam Speaker, I rise today as co-chair 
of the bipartisan Career and Technical Education Caucus to recognize 
February as National Career and Technical Education Month.
  Career and technical education programs play a key role in closing 
our Nation's skill gap by preparing students of all ages for the 21st 
century workforce and jobs. That is why I was encouraged by the 
inclusion of career and technical education center provisions in the 
recently passed Every Student Succeeds Act.
  Not only does the ESSA provide much-needed flexibility to States and 
local education agencies, it also encourages businesses to get involved 
with their local schools. More schools will be able to use Federal 
funds to provide academic credit for apprenticeships and strengthen 
their career counseling programs.
  This was a result of bipartisan legislation I introduced with the 
gentleman from Rhode Island (Mr. Langevin), my colleague and friend, 
aimed at informing school counselors of local labor market conditions 
so that they can best guide the decisionmaking process of their 
  It is my hope that this and other Federal education policies will 
provide support to schools, businesses, and community organizations in 
Pennsylvania's Fifth District and across the country as they work to 
prepare our students for the future.
  I look forward to working toward improving and reauthorizing the 
Perkins Act for career and technical education training.