– President Donald Trump signed the reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act last week, giving states more flexibility in broadening education opportunities to meet local workforce needs and giving political wins to several Minnesota politicians who worked on it.

“More than 11 million students and workers will have greater access to better training and more jobs,” Trump said at a speech at Tampa Technical High School.

U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, one of the original authors of the legislation, said that when he visits northern Minnesota manufacturing facilities in his district, he’s told by managers that the career and technical education participants are among the best employees they have — and they need more of them. The bill includes language from U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis that expands dual-enrollment opportunities for high school students.

The $1.2 billion investment, which was initially approved in 2006, includes legislation sponsored by U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar that authorizes research into the best ways to promote career and technical education to students.

“In the twenty-first century economy, we need a twenty-first century education system that prepares our students for the jobs of tomorrow that our businesses are creating today,” Klobuchar said in a statement.