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that human capital investment is cumulative; the success of later investment hinges on the amount of prior investment. Therefore, our plan is focused especially on younger workers who have demonstrated an attachment to the labor market, but who are unable to afford the cost of additional training. Older workers would be eligible as well, but we are realistic that it will be more difficult for older participants to continue working while taking on training. As discussed by Jacobson, LaLonde, and Sullivan (2005 a, b, c), this suggests that older workers who take up the resources could actually show better returns than the average participants because this group would include only those with a particular motivation.

The targeted group includes high school dropouts who have a history working at low wage jobs but have demonstrated evidence of steady employment. Other empirical evidence shows that women in general, and single mothers in particular, receive significant benefits from training, so we propose targeting training toward these workers as well (see Dyke et al., 2006; Heinrich, Mueser, Troske 2008). Finally, research on training programs shows that economically disadvantaged workers in general experience gains from training that typically exceed the cost of training (Heinrich, Mueser, Troske, 2008), so we would target this group as well.


A Plan for Ongoing Evaluation

As our discussion of the evaluation of current job training efforts makes clear, there has been inadequate systematic, rigorous, and ongoing evaluation of existing job training programs. And what has been done has focused on estimating the benefits for the average participant when it would be especially useful to assess as well the impacts for the marginal participant, since this would provide policymakers with additional guidance about which efforts to scale up or down. The patchwork of evaluation of training programs means that there remain important holes in our knowledge of what works and what does not work when it comes to retraining adult workers. Therefore, as part of our new job training regime, we propose that a meaningful effort should be undertaken in parallel to conduct ongoing evaluations of the entire training program as well as various components of the training


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