Gov. Walker: Signs legislation for technical education high school diplomas, second chance partners

Contact: Cullen Werwie, 608-267-7303

Measure to boost manufacturing by allowing students to transition from school to skilled trades

Madison—Governor Walker today signed legislation aimed at enhancing education and promoting job creation at Multi Products, Inc. in Racine Monday.

SB 335 allows school boards to offer technical education high school diplomas in addition to traditional high school diplomas.

“The unemployment rate is down to 6.9%, but there is more work to be done,” Governor Scott Walker said. “Manufacturers across the state often tell me they have good-paying jobs available and need skilled and dedicated workers. This legislation allows motivated young people in the state to transition seamlessly from high school to the skilled workforce. This will offer new opportunities for graduates and will continue our efforts to help rejuvenate the manufacturing industry in our state. I want to thank Rep. Mark Radcliffe and Sen. Van Wanggaard for their hard work on all of these bills.”

Under the law, school boards will be able to offer the technical education high school diploma to students who fulfill the requirements for a traditional high school diploma and successfully complete a technical education program in one or two subjects.

SB 361 expands the existing Second Chance program, which allows at-risk students to earn their high school diploma in partnership with a participating business. This allows students to utilize real-world scenarios and learn real-life skills as they work toward their high school degree.

SB 348 revises the current Second Chance Statutes to reconcile conflicting provisions.

The legislation signed today is only the latest step taken by Governor Walker to improve workforce training in the state and grow jobs.

Last week, the Wisconsin Covenant Foundation began accepting applications for the Wisconsin Workforce Partnership Grant opportunity. The Governor previously joined the Wisconsin Covenant Foundation in announcing the program which will support the rapid expansion or development and implementation of degree, diploma, or certificate programs that increase the number of program graduates who achieve job placement in occupations at Wisconsin businesses in need of employees with specific skills.

Joint grant applications must be submitted by a Wisconsin Technical College with one or more Wisconsin businesses as co-applicant(s). Partnerships selected for funding will be eligible for a grant maximum of $750,000. Grant applications are available at and will be accepted through 5:00 p.m. Central, on May 9, 2012.

In January, the Governor announced his Wisconsin Working plan which included numerous pieces of legislation and agency action to improve workforce training and connect job seekers with jobs. All of the legislative components passed and agencies are taking action to help job seekers.