Senate Approves Bill to Expand Availability of Job Training Programs

HARRISBURG – The Senate approved a bipartisan bill today that would expand job training programs to a broader number of Pennsylvanians by allowing Private Licensed Schools to create branch campuses in different counties, according to one of the bill’s sponsors, Senator Camera Bartolotta (R-46).

Under current law, technical schools can only establish branch campuses within the same county as the primary site. Senate Bill 456 would eliminate this restriction and allow schools to create branch campuses in neighboring counties and other locations within 60 miles of the primary location.

Current restrictions require a school to go through the costly and time-consuming process of securing another independent license for a second, out-of-county location.

Bartolotta, who chairs the Senate Labor and Industry Committee, said that the bill could play an important role in supporting Pennsylvania’s workforce development efforts by helping more state residents access job training programs.

“When career and technical schools have a proven track record of success in placing students in great job opportunities, we should not make them jump through additional hoops when they want to expand those programs to serve more people and more communities,” Bartolotta said. “The state needs to be a stronger partner in helping more Pennsylvanians access job training programs, and I thank my colleagues in the Senate for taking another step toward that goal.”

The bill also takes critical steps to address some of the most serious challenges facing career and technical schools as well as students, including giving schools the ability to provide direct grants to students, strengthening requirements for keeping student records, and ensuring students receive proper notification of any potential closures and transfer of credits.

Senator Jim Brewster (D-45) was also a prime sponsor of the bill.

Senate Bill 456 was sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.

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CONTACT:   Colleen Greer (717) 787-1463