April 4, 2011
Congressman Raúl Grijalva (Arizona) emphasized the importance of making the Elementary and Secondary Education Act a priority during the 112th Congress.
Grijalva also mentioned the need to provide relief to the DREAM Act students. Pell grant cuts were also discussed as an issue of concern. Grijalva spoke of his and the Administration’s opposition to these cuts, explaining that “a survival of the fittest approach” was not the answer.
”We are going to continue to resist these cuts” said Grijalva. “What I would like to see on the table alongside Pell grants is the 30 billion dollar subsidies we provide to oil and gas,” he said.
Speaking on the latest U.S. Census results and projections and their implications for education was Richard Fry, Ph.D., of the Pew Hispanic Center. He discussed the need to focus on education attainment to remain competitive, especially since Hispanics are projected to be the largest school-age population by 2050.
Gabriela D. Lemus, Ph.D. of the U.S. Department of Labor spoke of the change in the workforce in terms of demographics and qualifications. “Ninety percent of future jobs are going to require more than a high school degree,” said Lemus.
Ron Painter of the National Association of Workforce Boards discussed opportunities for collaboration between HACU and workforce development efforts. “We have a lot of work to do if we are going to remain the leading workforce,” said Painter.
The forum was sponsored in part by the AFT, The Coca-Cola Company, Sodexo and Southwest Airlines.