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The Ohio House of Representatives today passed House Bill 393, legislation that aims to better inform high school students of the career planning, job opportunities, and online education resources that are available to them through the OhioMeansJobs web site.

House Bill 393 compels the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, in consultation with the Ohio Department of Education, to create and maintain an online career planning tool for students as a part of the revamped OhioMeansJobs web site. It also requires public high schools to publish annually information regarding the online education and career planning tool on their existingweb sites or in their newsletters, beginning in the 2014-15 school year, to help students access the tools they need to succeed in their career searches and training.

“It’s exciting to see our state web site OhioMeansJobs updated to include the important career opportunities that exist in Ohio,” said State Representative Nan Baker (R-Westlake), who jointly sponsored House Bill 393 with State Representative Al Landis (R-Dover). “Students can create employment portfolios, called ‘backpacks,’ where they can learn about training opportunities, scholarships and internships. Another exciting feature is the ‘Thumbs-Up’ icon that contains in-demand occupations that offer good pay and the potential for growth.”

“The goal of this legislation is to provide a career planning tool for both students and parents,” said Rep. Landis. “House Bill 393 will allow students and parents to go into the planning stages with their eyes wide open, fully aware of which careers are in demand, a career’s anticipated earning potential, and how much it will cost to get there.”

The Department of Education would maintain a link to the online career planning tool, provide information to high schools about the planning tool, and annually survey schools regarding their use of the online career planning tool.

“Connecting our students with career opportunities that help them make good decisions during their high school years will benefit them for years to come,” said Rep. Baker. “As I continue to say, ‘It’s all about the jobs!’”

House Bill 393 will now move to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

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