SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KERO) — California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the state awarded $54 million in grants dedicated to furthering education on August 24th. The areas receiving these grants are Los Angeles County, the Inland Empire, and the border region.
As part of the K-16 Education Collaboratives Grant Program, a $250 million state program that focuses on education and career pathways for underprivileged students, Newsom has awarded around $18 million to three additional areas in California: Los Angeles County, the Inland Empire, and the border region. Prior to this, he had awarded over $108 million in grants to Kern County, San Joaquin Valley, Sacramento, Redwood Coast, Orange County, and the North State region through the same program.
“There is a tremendous need statewide for the role the collaboratives will fill in working to transform the public education system and meeting the needs of regional workforces while ensuring equitable pathways to meaningful careers for all learners of California," said Department of General Services Director Ana Lasso. "We are looking forward to rolling out the second phase of funding for the program soon, which will provide additional opportunities to expand this program throughout all regions of the state.”
The K-16 Education Collaboratives Grant Program was established through the Department of General Services and has an overall goal of providing Californians with the opportunities they need to join the workforce. According to the K-16 Education Collaboratives Grant Program website, "the K-16 Program is part of a statewide strategy for strengthening education-to-workforce pathways and ensuring that education, vocational, and workforce programs work in partnership to address the income, racial, and gender inequalities in education and employment."
To be eligible to receive grants from the K-16 Education Collaboratives Grant Program, California regions must have at least one California State University campus, one University of California campus, one public K-12 school district, and one California Community College district, as well as a steering board where at least 25 percent of members must be employers in the region. Chosen regions must agree to participate in the California Cradle-to-Career Data System, create accelerated pathways to necessary fields such as Healthcare and Education, and implement at least four of the recommendations provided in California's February 2021 Recovery with Equity report.
“California is preparing the next generation for the jobs of the future,” said Newsom. “We’re closing equity gaps, providing more resources to help our students achieve their career goals right in their own communities, and streamlining the pipeline from K-12 to higher education to careers.”