Senate Bill (SB) 441, 83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session (2013), established the Texas Fast Start program, which is defined as a career and technical education program designed to help students earn postsecondary certificates and degrees and enter the workforce quickly.
The goal of the Texas Fast Start program is to meet the needs identified by employers and other interested parties for additional fast-track, affordable certification programs in high-growth target industries. Industries and occupations that will benefit from the Fast Start program must align with those targeted industries and occupations, as identified in the local workforce board strategies and initiatives defined in the Local Workforce Development Board (Board) plans; and those related to former Governor Perry's six (6) industry clusters. In addition, Fast Start participants collaborated with the Boards to assess WANTED Analytics, the exclusive data provider for The Conference Board's Help-Wanted OnLine Data Series(TM), in order to focus on occupations currently in high demand. The Fast Start program benefits both job seekers and employers by making available the rapid delivery of workforce education.
Funding was made available for one-time grants to support the development or expansion of Fast Start programs, with an emphasis on competency-based, rapid-deployment education delivery models for use by public junior colleges, public state colleges, and public technical institutes.