Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

HB-5434

Title:

AN ACT REQUIRING A TECHNICAL HIGH SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY-TECHNICAL COLLEGE COOPERATIVE.

Vote Date:

3/13/2014

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable

PH Date:

3/4/2014

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee

REASONS FOR BILL:

The bill sets forth a protocol for establishing a collaboration between the regional community-technical college system and the technical high school system for sharing space, equipment, materials or instructors that would allow technical high school students to earn college credits from the community technical colleges. It also requires a report to be made to the Higher Education Committee of the General Assembly on the status by January 1, 2015.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Dr. Nivea Torres, Connecticut Technical High School System Superintendent and Ms. Gail Coppage, Director of Innovation and Outreach, Boards of Regents

Dr. Torres testified and Dr. Torres and Ms. Coppage submitted written testimony on this bill and indicated that they did not believe that this legislation was necessary. In their testimony they indicated:

“It cannot be stressed enough that an easily understood, easily identifiable, unified and supported articulation across systems will better support our students both at the technical high schools and throughout our system of institutions but especially our community colleges.”

“With this goal in mind and the need to further articulate the relationship of the manufacturing programs at the technical high schools with the new advanced manufacturing center programs at four of our community colleges, the BOR and the THSS together created an Educational Success Compact. The Educational Compact was applauded and approved by the Technical High School System Board at its November 2013 meeting. (A copy of the compact was included with their testimony.) The purpose of the Educational Success Compact is to provide a series of expectations and immediate next steps which will serve as a blueprint for not only a system to system articulation but also proposed opportunities for efficiencies across systems, additional opportunities for programming and utilization of existing space for future educational and training through Community College programming.”

“A key component of the compact is also the commitment to expanding our partnership and creating the first 9-14 pathway in the state for technical high school students into a community college.”

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Jennifer Herz, Assistant Counsel, Connecticut Business and Industry Association

Jennifer Herz submitted written testimony and testified in support of this bill pointing out that it will encourage community colleges and technical high schools to work together to maximize the use of the existing equipment by sharing with neighboring schools. Much of the hi-tech equipment that they use to train students is expensive and more students using the equipment would mean less duplication of equipment that would need to be purchased. CBIA believes that this bill would help learning institutions defray some of the cost by maximizing the use of existing equipment and that it would also start students on a path towards college credit in high school which would act as encouragement for them to stay in school.

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

See agency response.

Reported by: Richard Ferrari, Assistant Clerk

Date: March 18, 2014