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(110 ILCS 805/2-26)
21st Century Employment grant program.
(a) Subject to appropriation, the State Board shall establish and administer a 21st Century Employment grant program. To qualify for a grant, a community college district and a public high school located in that district must jointly establish a collaborative regional partnership with workforce development organizations, including community-based organizations with a vested interest in the workforce, regional economic development organizations, and economic development officials in the district, along with manufacturers, healthcare service providers, and innovative technology businesses that have a presence in the district, to provide a manufacturing training program. A grant recipient must provide the State Board with a plan that meets all of the following requirements:
(1) The plan shall define specific goals that a
student must meet upon graduation.
(2) The plan shall include the type of professional
skills that will be taught in order for the students to gain and retain employment. The professional skills curriculum in the program shall include, but not be limited to, training on all of the following:
(A) Effective communication skills.
(E) Conflict resolution.
(K) Work ethic.
In awarding grants under this Section, the State
Board must give priority to plans that demonstrate a formal articulation agreement between a public high school and a community college district.
(3) The plan shall include a budget that includes any
outside donations, including any in-kind donations, made to help the program, including from non-profit entities and individuals.
(4) The plan shall include the proposed number of
individuals who would be enrolled in the program, along with the places that those individuals could be employed at after graduation and what industries would be targeted. The plan must support a seamless transition into higher education and career opportunities and must outline the college credit and on-the-job training hours that will transfer from the high school to a community college.
(5) The plan shall require a private-public
partnership clause that requires private businesses to contribute an amount determined by the State Board and the collaborative regional partnership that does not exceed 40% of the amount of the total project. The applicant must provide the State Board with a receipt of contributions from businesses to evidence compliance with this paragraph. However, businesses may contribute equipment or offer their facilities, in which case a business shall establish a cost of use of its facility, to meet the requirements of this paragraph.
(6) The plan shall indicate the certificates that the
community college or high school will offer to students upon graduation, as agreed to by the collaborative regional partnership. The community college or high school shall offer no less than 6 types of industry-recognized certificates.
(b) The State Board shall establish an advisory board for the grant program established under subsection (a) that consists of all of the following members:
(1) The Director of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
(2) The Executive Director of the State Board.
(3) The State Superintendent of Education.
(4) The Director of Labor.
(5) A senator appointed by the President of the
(6) A senator appointed by the Minority Leader of the
(7) A representative appointed by the Speaker of the
House of Representatives.
(8) A representative appointed by the Minority
Leader of the House of Representatives.
(9) A member from a statewide organization that
represents manufacturing companies throughout this State, appointed by the Governor.
(10) A member who represents at-risk students,
including, but not limited to, opportunity youth, appointed by the Governor.
(11) A member from a statewide organization that
represents multiple employee unions in this State, appointed by the Governor.
(12) A member from a trade union, appointed by the
(13) A member from a statewide organization that
represents the business community, appointed by the Governor.
(14) A member from a statewide organization that
represents service employees in this State, appointed by the Governor.
(15) Educators representing various regions of this
State from professional teachers' organizations, appointed by the Governor.
(16) A member from a statewide organization that
represents hospitals in this State, appointed by the Governor.
(17) A president of a community college, appointed by
(18) A district superintendent of a high school
district, appointed by the Governor.
The members of the advisory board shall serve without compensation but shall be reimbursed for their reasonable and necessary expenses from funds appropriated to the State Board for that purpose, including travel, subject to the rules of the appropriate travel control board.
The advisory board shall meet at the call of the State Board and shall report to the State Board. The State Board shall provide administrative and other support to the advisory board.
(c) The advisory board established under subsection (b) shall have all of the following duties:
(1) To review the progress made by each grant
recipient, including, but not limited to, the gainful-employment success rate, how many students remain employed for how long, and how many students went on to receive higher manufacturing certificates.
(2) To review how many students went on to complete a
paid internship or apprenticeship upon graduation.
(3) To compile a list of programs offered by each
community college or high school.
(4) To analyze whether the certificates are closing
the gap in education for the current needs of the labor force, and to offer suggestions on how to close the gap if one still exists.
(5) To suggest certificates that could help future
employers looking to locate in this State.
(6) To offer guidelines for the types of certificates
that a community college or high school should pursue.
(7) To offer possible rules to the State Board that
the grant process should follow.
(d) The State Board may adopt any rules necessary for the purposes of this Section.
(Source: P.A. 101-437, eff. 1-1-20; 102-558, eff. 8-20-21.)