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Drafted bill would help Idaho achieve 60 percent goal of people with postsecondary credentials

Posted: 5:18 PM, Mar 11, 2019
Updated: 2019-03-11 23:23:21Z

BOISE — Inside the statehouse, Boise Democratic Senator Grant Burgoyne proposed a bill to provide financial support to Idaho students seeking education and training beyond high school. Burgoyne believes the program would keep people in Idaho, and place them in the thousands of high-skilled, unfilled jobs in our state.

It's an effort to achieve the states goal of having 60 percent of its 25 to 34-year-olds having postsecondary credentials. Currently Idaho is in a bit of a rut with just 42 percent receiving that additional education.

The legislation would be available to students of all ages and incomes, targeting those who wish to enroll in one-year certificate and two-year associate degree programs. It's called the "last dollar" approach, and it comes with requirements for the student to seek federal financial aid and scholarships, and also perform community service, in order to prove their commitment to their education, and help ensure they don't drop out before completion.

"States that get the workforce are going to get the jobs, and we have to develop our workforce in Idaho if we want to command higher wages for our people and we want to have a stronger economy," said Senator Grant Burgoyne (D) Boise.

The legislation would task community and technology colleges with providing students pre and post enrollment mentors, and ultimately maximize the return on investment for the student and the state.

Burgoyne plans to introduce the legislation next year.