Pointing to how COVID-19 is impacting the state’s economy, on Friday, Gov. Ron DeSantis and Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran announces the next phase of funding for the Florida Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant.
Almost $2.8 million was awarded to school districts, colleges and private entities to either start or expand registered apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs throughout the state.
“The Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant puts funding behind a time-tested workforce education model focused on talent development and reducing the statewide skills gap. We understand that some Florida employers who utilize the registered apprenticeship model to train their workforce may have halted their operations due to COVID-19,” said DeSantis. “As we announce the second award phase, I stand ready to assist employers and apprentices so getting a great education in high demand fields can continue.”
“The Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant ensures that Governor DeSantis’ bold vision for expanding high quality workforce education is carried out,” said Corcoran. “The department is proud to work with these new awardees in the development of new, flexible and market-driven programs. This kind of workforce education matters for our state’s economic stability and vitality, especially during this time of trial.”
The Education Department insisted the grant program has already proven successful, noting how the state of Florida, in partnership with the Pinellas County School Board, is first in the nation in providing a pathway for current and future school district employees to become a CTE teacher of record through a Registered Apprenticeship program.
The school districts listed below received funding:
Broward County School District
Hillsborough School District
Manatee School District
Orange School District
Osceola School District
Palm Beach School District
Pasco School District
The colleges listed below received funding:
Eastern Florida State College
Space Coast Consortium
Lake-Sumter State College
St. Petersburg College
Tallahassee Community College
The private entities listed below received funding:
ABC Institute, Inc.
Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association, Inc.
Nursery and Landscape
iBuild Central Florida
Jacksonville Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee, Inc., JACT Adult
During this year’s legislative session, DeSantis worked with the Florida Legislature to secure funding for Florida’s students and families, including $10 million dedicated to apprenticeships. Between both phases of the grant, 17 school districts (30 programs), 11 colleges (17 programs), one university (one program) and five private entities (six programs) received grants.