This is a press release from the office of Congresswoman Lucy McBath
Congresswoman Lucy McBath introduced the CREATES Act, federal legislation that establishes a grant program to assist states in building their own public credential repositories to provide greater transparency for students, job seekers, workers, and employers. This bill builds on the work of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), in addition to bills led by McBath—the Youth Workforce Readiness Act, the Adult Education WORKS Act, and most recently, the TRAIN Act—all of which help modernize our education and workforce systems to adapt to a changing economy and meet the needs of the American workforce.
“Education takes many forms— it doesn’t just mean college degrees,” said Congresswoman McBath. “Employers need more information to know what credentials are going to equip their workers with the skills they need. When our students and workers are exploring what credentials and certificates to pursue, they should have the full wealth of information to understand their options and where those choices will lead them. The CREATES Act will help American students, workers, and employers make the best decisions as they invest their time and resources.”
“With so many credentials and providers in the country it’s too easy for students and workers to get lost, miss out on opportunities, and fall into debt,” noted Scott Cheney, CEO of Credential Engine. “This bill will support states in their efforts to gather and provide rich information about all credentials available to their residents so that individuals can make more informed decisions about their own education and career pathways.”
Crucially, the bill makes a one-time appropriation of $150 million available to states through a grant program operated by the Secretary of Labor to establish credential repositories, wherein information regarding what uses various credentials such as certificates or degrees may have would be transparently available for comparison with both others in the region and in the national labor market. States would be eligible for up to $5 million each, and the grants would span three years. It would allow employers to find skilled workers more easily, allow workers to understand what credentials they would need to show their skills in a given topic, and allow students to better understand what degree or credential process is best for them by reducing the number of places to search for this information.