Iowa Survey on Early Education Needs
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The current unemployment rate in Iowa is 2.5%, and there are currently 40,000 people on unemployment and 60,000 job openings. As historically low unemployment continues, employers are always looking for opportunities to recruit more workers and also to retain their existing workforce. To solve this challenge, Iowa business leaders have increased wages, offered flexible work environments where possible, and expanded benefits. More recently, one of those benefits is childcare.  
Talent Forward 2019 Wrap-Up
© Photo by Ian Wagreich / © U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Each year, as the Chamber Foundation hosts the Talent Forward national workforce conference, we focus on talent—educating and training, talent tech and data, recruiting, hiring, and upskilling. With no shortage of talent challenges, the opportunities for informative discussion are endless. While a day devoted to dissecting talent-related topics could focus solely on the problems, Talent Forward is all about the solutions.

Renewable Learning
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As the labor market tightens and the pace of technological change continues to accelerate, it’s becoming an increasingly common theme that the traditional “one-and-done” model of education is over. As a result, employers, policymakers, and analysts alike are increasingly calling for new approaches to lifelong learning that will help upskill and re-skill individuals to compete and succeed in a fast-changing economy. In this shifting landscape education and workforce organizations are joining forces to experiment with new models with the potential to create pathways to opportunity and economic mobility. 
Creative Solutions to Tech Re-Entry Hiring
© i.c. stars
This past spring, members of the Information Technology Alliance (ITA) visited technology workforce development nonprofit i.c.stars prior to the start of their Chicago conference. As part of a Solve-A-Thon activity, designed and led by i.c.stars graduates, the group ended up discussing an unusual topic in technology: re-entry hiring.
ECE is a Broken System
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In this country, the early childhood education system is in market failure. In recent years we have seen the greatest federal funding increases for early childhood education in history, and yet those significant investments just barely make a dent to tackle the need. In 2018, NASEM studied “how to fund early care and education for children…that is accessible, affordable to families, and of high quality, including a well-qualified and adequately supported workforce.” The report concluded that a financial windfall of around $54 billion would be required. 

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