Two WIA Bills to Be Introduced in the House on This Week

I was pleased to have the opportunity to join my fellow National Coalition for Literacy (NCL) board members up on the Hill this morning for meetings with Congressional staff. I was particularly pleased we had a chance to meet with staff members of the House Committee on Education and Workforce responsible for Workforce Investment Act (WIA) reauthorization. As luck would have it, we were among the first to learn that two WIA bills are going to be introduced in the House tomorrow: one from Rep. Virginia Foxx to that they said was designed to remove duplication and consolidate federal workforce programs under WIA; and one from Rep. Joe Heck concerned with tying job training more closely with the needs of the local business community.

They don’t expect markup on either of these anytime soon. So it’s not huge news—and these two bills will not have much concerning adult literacy in them—but it’s nice to hear that there is any kind of movement on WIA in the House. (Title II of WIA is the primary piece of federal legislation concerning adult literacy, and thus advocates feel that any movement on WIA is a good sign for us.) NCL is also asking House members to consider holding a hearing on adult literacy sometime next year, and we got some positive feedback on that today as well.