COLUMBUS—Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) today announced the passage of legislation aimed at making Ohio's education system more responsive to the workforce demands of the state's 21st century economy.

"Ohio has many job openings right now, and tens of thousands of people looking for work," said Obhof. "This legislation helps bridge the gap by helping Ohioans obtain the skills they need for today's economy."

Co-sponsored by President Obhof, Senate Bill 3 supports efforts to develop a statewide strategy aimed at preparing the next generation of workers to take on careers in some of Ohio's most in-demand professions.

A significant gap exists between the number of workers expected to hold degrees and certifications and the estimated labor force demands over the next ten years. The bill seeks to narrow this gap by strengthening the connection between the state's business and education communities. 

In collaboration with the Ohio Department of Education and Department of Higher Education, Ohio's major industries would help to create a statewide strategic workforce plan for enhancing project-based learning and come up with professional development programs that address how to build authentic, real-world, project-based learning into the curriculum.

As part of an effort to connect future workers and employers, economic development leaders and education officials would be charged with developing meaningful career service opportunities based on regional workforce needs. 

Senate Bill 3 now goes to the House of Representatives for further consideration. 

The Senate also approved legislation this week aimed at showcasing Ohio's vibrant boating and tourism industry, which has a $3.6 billion impact on the state's economy. Designating the month of June as "Ohio Goes Boating Month," the bill seeks to highlight the importance of preserving and protecting Lake Erie, as well as all of Ohio’s waterways, for Ohioans to enjoy.  

House Bill 84 now goes to the Governor's office for signature.
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