ERIC Number: ED354390
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992
Reference Count: N/A
Selected Contemporary Work Force Reports: A Synthesis and Critique. Information Series No. 354.
Weber, James M.
Demographic and social changes, increasing economic interdependence, and educational reform movements are causing major changes in vocational education. Essential work force skills and the standards to account for their achievement are being debated. The 1980s'"Excellence Movement" focused on strengthening academic requirements, developing public-private partnerships, and setting higher expectations for students, while increasing access for women, minorities, and people with disabilities. Shortcomings were the conflict between raised standards and increased access, lack of attention to noncollege-bound students, and failure to address adult retraining needs. State initiatives and America 2000 are responses to these challenges. America 2000 and several work force preparation proposals ("Investing in People,""America's Choice," and "What Work Requires of Schools") agree on such basic issues as international economic competitiveness, collaboration, and the need for standards and measures. A consensus-building effort that synthesizes the best from each proposal, more consistent use of the terminology of performance measures/standards, and more attention to existing experience in this area are recommended. Another "excellence movement" being widely implemented is total quality management (TQM). The four work force preparation strategies do not reflect the TQM vision and direction. A unified national policy should consider the following: retraining and upgrading the skills of the workers already in the work force, small businesses, and convincing business/industry that making larger investments in education/training will improve their profits. (Contains 112 references.) (SK)
Descriptors: Accountability, Basic Skills, Educational Change, Educational Objectives, Educational Quality, Evaluation Criteria, Job Skills, Labor Force, Labor Force Development, Performance Factors, Postsecondary Education, School Restructuring, Secondary Education, Standards, Total Quality Management, Vocational Education
Center on Education and Training for Employment, Center Publications, 1900 Kenny Road, Columbus, OH 43210-1090 (order no. IN 354: $6 plus $3.50 postage and handling; quantity discounts available).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, Columbus, OH.