HB 5 and Meeting Industry Needs in Texas

October 21, 2014 |

This is the sixth and final installation in our fall blog series, House Bill 5: Past, Present and Future. HB 5 is the landmark accountability and assessment legislation passed during the 83rd Texas Legislative Session (2013). We have explored what the bill did, how it came about, how it empowers Texas students, what it means for parents and how K-12 and Higher Ed are collaborative partners.

Each blog in this series features an introductory video by HD Chambers, Superintendent of Alief ISD and pioneer for the HB 5 movement, followed by information about one of the many ways HB 5 impacts education, business, and communities across Texas.

“There’s not an industry that’s not affected by House Bill 5.” – Joe Arnold, BASF

As described in the following video, House Bill 5 changed the way we think about high school graduation paths and workforce development in Texas. The landmark legislation not only gives students more flexibility in choosing rigorous and relevant courses and “endorsement” areas of study, but it also places greater emphasis on the connection between coursework and postsecondary plans, be they college or career.

In particular, the law casts a spotlight on coursework and career paths for some of the most in-demand jobs in Texas, including health care, public services, and technical/industry careers.

Enter Joe Arnold, Manager of Government Affairs at BASF. Arnold not only works to promote public policy and legislation that will benefit the chemical industry, but he has deep ties to workforce development and efforts in the public education arena to connect students with some of the most in-demand jobs in Texas.

Arnold serves as Chairman of the Workforce Committees at the Texas Association of Manufacturers and the Texas Chemical Council, is a Board member of the Association of Chemical Industry in Texas, and serves on the Advocacy Committee of the Texas Chemical Council. He was also one of the founders of the Texas For Jobs Coalition. The Coalition was instrumental in advocating for HB 5 and communicating with legislators about the need for more workforce-ready Texas graduates.

We have explored HB 5 through multiple lenses in an effort to demonstrate how this impactful bill affects each and every Texan. While HB 5 is complex and comprehensive in nature, it is critical that Texans have a basic understanding of its implications in order to ensure its future success. If all HB 5 stakeholders (school districts, students, parents, higher ed, businesses) take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the new law in an environment of collaboration, Texas will graduate students who are more prepared, qualified, and inspired to lead the future of our state.

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