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Work-Based Learning:

A Timeline by: Kevin Jost

Created for EDUC705

19th Century
*There is a very long history of workbased education in America
*This tradition began with the
manual training movement towards
the end of the 19th century
*Since the passage of the SmithHughes National Vocation Education
Act in 1917, vocational education
has been an aspect of public

*Beginning in the early 1970s, there was sharp decline in U.S. productivity growth
*There was also a noticeable decline in the growth rate of wages
*These productivity growth trends began to be seriously scrutinized as compared to other
industrial countries among the global community
*During the 1980s there became a noticeable wage gap between those who had earned college
degrees and those who had not
*What was happening was that skilled workers were earning much higher wages than compared
to unskilled workers

*Simply put, Americas workforce is in a state of unreadinessunready for the new jobs,
unready for the new realities, unready for the new challenges of the 90s. Elizabeth Dole Secretary of Labor
*The Secretarys Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills was launched in 1989
*In this report, it was concluded that ALL high school students must possess a set of
competencies and foundation skills if they are to create a productive life for themselves
*We must characterize the standards of our high schools after the most competitive companies
within our local and global communities
*SCANS skills must become part of everyday life for ALL students
*In 1991, SCANS issued their first report titled: What Work Requires of Schools.
*Five competencies and three foundations were identified for students to develop skills within

Early 1990s
*Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Education Act Amendments of 1990 in
response to two trends seen during the 1980s
*First, an increase in the percentage of students who continued with post-secondary education
directly following high school
*Second, research was showing that most vocational education students really did not benefit
from the specific training they received during high school.
*W. Stull, Sanders, and J. Stull (200) reported that the majority of high schools in a nationwide
sample has a various STW offerings by 1992
*School-to-Work Opportunities Act (STWOA)
was passed
*The purpose of this act was to create a statebased national workforce development system
*Funding would be allocated to individual
states in order to develop STW programs
meeting their individual educational needs
*Grants were awarded after states provided
proof of establishing governance systems as
well as partnerships a wide range of
*Goals 2000: Educate America Act
*This act facilitated the establishment of high standards and widespread reform for the
achievement of all students
*Two important goals originating from this act . . . .
*One, All American students will leave school prepared for productive employment
*Two, every adult American will possess the knowledge and skills necessary to compete in a
global economy
Mid 1990s
*Mainly as a result of the passing of STWOA, all stakeholders involved were able to come to a
general consensus of what the model STW program would look like . . . .
*A coherent combination of linked school-based learning, work-based learning, and connecting
activities for broad range of students learning to higher academic achievement and improved
labor-market outcomes
*By 1998, all fifty states and Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia had qualified for the
STWOA grants available