The Center for Education and Workforce is a program of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF), an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The center is dedicated to strengthening American’s long-term competitiveness via its efforts to inform and mobilize the business community to be more engaged partners, challenge the status quo, and connect education and workforce reform to economic development.
Through its research, programs, and policy on education and skills training, the Center for Education and Workforce informs the business community on how to make a difference in education and workforce reform.
TACKLING PRESSING ISSUES
Nearly four million three- and four-year-olds in the United States are not enrolled in preschool programs, putting them at risk of entering school underprepared. Investing in early learning leads to student success and results in approximately a 10% annual rate of return on investment. The center adds to the national conversation on preschool policies and programs and provides data to the business community.
Globally, U.S. students rank 17th in literacy, 21st in science, and 26th in math. Today’s K–12 education system is not preparing students with the skills they need to succeed. The center promotes closing academic achievement gaps, supporting effective teachers, and attaining high standards for college and career readiness, including the Common Core State Standards.
Fewer than half of students who enter postsecondary programs graduate in six years. Students seeking access to postsecondary education programs are increasingly burdened with economic and educational barriers. The center promotes improved access and affordability, increased transparency, and a focus on multiple pathways for students to gain postsecondary credentials needed to succeed in the workforce.
There are currently 5 million jobs unfilled due in part to an underprepared workforce. The unemployment rate for youth aged 20–24 sits at 11%. Through coalitions, the center provides a network for thought leaders to address the skills gap through proven strategies. The center works to expand opportunities to tout examples of excellence and create a dialogue among key players, including the business community, human resource officers, and industry associations.