Governor Greg Abbott today charged the Tri-Agency Workforce Initiative, consisting of the Commissioners of the Texas Education Agency (TEA), the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB), and the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC), to marshal the combined resources of the three agencies to carry forward the reforms adopted by the 86th Legislature through the passage of House Bill 3 and to identify strategies to address long-term workforce development needs across the state. These charges will culminate with a report that will be presented to the Governor by September 1, 2020.
“The passage of House Bill 3 marked the most significant transformation of our education system in decades and an unwavering commitment to shaping the future of our workforce,” said Governor Abbott. “We must continue in our efforts to ensure Texans of all ages have access to high-quality education and workforce skills training that empowers them to achieve their full potential. It is imperative that we build upon the resources of House Bill 3 and accompanying legislation to ensure today’s students and tomorrow’s workforce are prepared to meet Texas’ long-term workforce needs in a comprehensive and efficient manner.”
The Governor has charged the Commissioners with developing strategies to achieve the following:
- Readiness: The Commissioners should recommend strategies to ensure students are prepared for future growth at each stage in the educational pipeline.
- Completion: The Commissioners should recommend strategies to ensure students who pursue higher education and workforce educational programs can complete those programs in a cost-efficient and timely manner.
- Transitions: The Commissioners should analyze and make recommendations regarding strategies to streamline educational pathways, ensuring students can seamlessly transition into high-wage and high-demand careers.
- Upskilling: The Commissioners should recommend strategies for improving the capacity within the state to produce credentials of value aligned with the needs of high-wage and high-demand occupations.
- Educator Pipeline: The Commissioners should analyze and make recommendations to increase the supply of highly qualified and well-trained individuals entering the teaching profession across the state.
- Partnerships: The Commissioners should explore and recommend options for increasing economic activity in rural Texas, reducing regulatory burdens, and expanding educational partnerships between businesses, school districts, and colleges.
- Infrastructure: The Commissioners should identify strategies to align agency operations, increase program efficiency, improve data analysis and capacity, and to refine 60x30TX, if necessary, to ensure the state’s goals continue to reflect the state’s needs.
Governor Abbott established the Tri-Agency Workforce Initiative in 2016. The initiative assesses local economic activity, examines workforce challenges and opportunities, and considers innovative approaches to meeting the state’s workforce goals. The initiative is led by TEA Commissioner Mike Morath, THECB Commissioner Harrison Keller, and TWC Chairman Bryan Daniel. A progress report outlining many of the accomplishments of the initiative to date can be found in the February 2020 report.