Pandemic, Economic Downturn Has Exposed Skilled Labor Shortage

The pandemic and economic downturn is exposing America’s unprecedented skilled labor shortage.

Skilled Tradespeople’s salaries are going up, but there's still millions of jobs across the country that go unfilled. Jobs for electricians, plumbers, and machinists. It’s a problem that's getting worse due to the downturn in the oil and gas industry. However, Erin Valdez, with Texas Public Policy Foundation, says the Lone Star State can turn that around if our school districts offer the right classes and the right programs.

“One of the things to think about is how to get employers to the table. Helping the school district decide ‘Hey look, this is the big job shortage in our area. These are the kinds of training programs that are needed,’” Valdez said.

She says a good example is Spring Branch ISD, which has a (CTE) program working with Houston Community College and TRIO Electric in Houston.

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