Lawmakers face calls to expand vocational school infrastructure

The group wants the state to establish a $3-billion bond program

BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Education advocates are urging Massachusetts lawmakers to invest more in the state’s future workforce.

Advocates said access is one of the main challenges for vocational schools with many students on waiting lists. They’re urging the state to put more funding into getting more students in the programs and building new schools.

More than 3,000 students are on waiting lists to get into schools that offer career and technical education.

The Alliance for Vocational Technical Education released a report Friday that found that while enrollment continues to grow, infrastructure and funding sources have not expanded to meet workforce needs.

Secretary of Education Jim Peyser told 22News, “We need to make these opportunities available to more of our young people and, in particular, in those under-served communities that have the least access and have the greatest need and can benefit the most.”

The group wants the state to establish a $3-billion bond program to fund school renovations and equipment purchases.

The alliance also wants the state to establish a 10-year bond program to pay for construction of two to three new schools per year.