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R. Caputo

Yeshiva University (UNITED STATES)
Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, the 1997 cohort (NLSY97), this paper reports results of a study that explores the educational and economic outcomes of maturing youth who participated in school-based learning or School-to-Work (STW) programs, government training, and/or other more traditional vocational/technical education programs between 1997 and 2002. A proliferation of STW programs resulted in part from passage of the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Education Act Amendments of 1990 (P.L. 101-392, also known as Perkins II), and in part from passage of The School-to-Work Opportunities Act of 1994 (P.L. 103-239, STWOA) during the Clinton administration. Perkins II targeted high school and two-year or community college students; whereas, STWOA targeted primarily high school students. STW legislation aimed at completion of the high school degree or an equivalency diploma or an alternative certificate recognizing successful completion of one or two years of post-secondary education, a skill certificate, or admission to a two- or four-year college or university. Although STWOA expired in October 2001, school-based learning programs and the idea itself both preceded and lingered on in alternative forms; such as, Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs that relied on other sources of federal and state money. This paper compares the educational and economic outcomes of STW participants to government-sponsored training program enrollees, and to those who participated in vocational/technical education programs outside regular schooling between 1997 and 2002 as well as to those who participated in none of these major types of work-preparedness or job training initiatives. Economic well-being outcome measures included family and wage income between (a) 2003 by which time more than three fourths of the cohort had completed twelve years if not most or all of their formal schooling, and (b) 2006, the most recent year of available NLSY97 data at the outset of this study. Measures of human capital included: (a) labor force attachment, (b) additional schooling, and (c) additional job-related training; and two cumulative EITC-related outcome measures: (a) number of years respondents were eligible for the EITC and (b) number of years respondents filed for the EITC.