Lifelong Learning and Training could get boost under new bill

Virginia Sen. Mark R. Warner says he will introduce legislation to make lifelong learning more accessible for low- and moderate-income workers. The Lifelong Learning and Training Account Act would establish a tax-preferred savings account with a generous government match to assist workers seeking to retrain or upskill over the course of their careers.

In the coming years, more workers will be required to learn new skills throughout their careers. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, up to one-third of the U.S. workforce will need to learn new skills or find work in new occupations by 2030 due to automation.

As a result, American workers are increasingly likely to hold many different jobs over the course of their careers, and in many cases technology will transform the skills they need and even the types of jobs available. The Lifelong Learning and Training Account Act would provide workers with a portable, government-matched savings vehicle for lifelong learning.

“Lifelong learning is quickly becoming a necessity for American workers. We need to make sure Americans are able to retrain and upskill throughout their career, so they can thrive in the modern economy,” says Warner. “This will not happen on its own. It requires a serious investment to help workers pay for the education and training necessary to modernize their skills — by employees, by employers, and by the government. The Lifelong Learning and Training Account Act represents that serious investment.”

The bill will be introduced when the Senate returns after Thanksgiving.

No better time to point out that while far more affordable than most learning institutions, RappU’s Lifelong Learning offers a wide-ranging selection of classes taught by volunteer instructors. Held during spring and fall semesters, the classes generally cost $20 or $25 each and run for three to nine weeks in length.

There are also more in-depth training classes at RappU, including for nursing skills.

Registration for Spring 2019 classes will open in March. Classes are held at the RappU facility located at 12018 Lee Highway in Sperryville (the Sperryville Schoolhouse) as well as other sites spread throughout Rappahannock County.

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