The value of adult education, training
June 22, 2003
Republican gubernatorial candidate Haley Barbour of Yazoo City suggested recently that it's time for Mississippi to gets its act together on training for people who are already in the workforce. According to Barbour, Mississippi under the tenure of Gov. Ronnie Musgrove left $42.7 million in federal workforce investment and job training money on the table this at a time when funding for community colleges and institutions of higher learning have been cut.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Mississippi has 31,000 fewer people working today in non-farm jobs.
Barbour said the state's commitment to K-12 is critical to longterm needs, but a real commitment to additional training for adults in the workforce would pay benefits over a shorter period. His observations are right on target, especially as major international companies look to Mississippi for future expansions; they will need trained workers.
Barbour recognizes the real connection between education, economic development and improvements in quality of life for all Mississippians. The concept he has proposed is certainly worthy of consideration and the standard on which our elected officials should be judged is really very simple: Results.
Mississippi must not lose any more ground.