Waldo County Tech Center Completes Pilot Session of Career and Tech Education Summer Camp

BELFAST – The Waldo County Technical Center has just completed its pilot summer camp session on careers and technical education. The camp took place on the WCTC campus for the last two weeks of July. About thirty campers took part.

The camp had five programs for middle school students in Waldo County. In fine woodworking, led by WCTC building instructor Rich Benedict, campers made lamps, cutting boards and icing knives.

In the Culinary Arts, led by Jackie Boulay, WCTC Culinary Instructor, campers enjoyed learning how to make lots of sweet treats, as well as providing snacks and hot meals for all campers and staff. Malaki Maker, a seventh grader at Liberty’s home, thinks he would like to be a chef someday and is considering taking the WCTC Culinary Arts program in high school.

Jeremiah Johnson, WCTC IT Director and Computer Careers Instructor, led applied computer engineering, where campers designed and printed 3D models, programmed and piloted robots, and flew drones.

Gilman Russell, who teaches automotive / composite collisions at the WCTC during the school year, has been working on carbon fiber composites. Campers made epoxy molded paper weights and were able to create and paint their own boogie boards.

In the outdoor recreation arena, leaders Nancy Zane and Chris Kein taught campers the art of outdoor cooking, baking everything from cinnamon buns to upside down peach cake and pizza. They also hiked Mount Bald Rock, canoeed at Freedom Pond and Megunticook Lake, competed in relay races, and learned how to start a fire with flint and steel.

These experiences allowed campers to learn more about careers and technical education while having fun in the summer with their peers!


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Sanford Regional Technical Center welcomes middle school students

SANFORD, Maine – The Sanford Regional Tech Center hosted its first-ever in-person “Camp SRTC” experience for junior high school students in Southern York County during the weeks June 14-17 and June 21-24.

Students in grades six to eight could choose from programs such as Academy of Business, Digital Design, Fire Science, Law Enforcement, Video Production, or STEM A or B (including a variety of automotive and collision repair, construction, precision manufacturing and Welding technologies).

SRTC instructors, assisted by SRTC students, led four days of hands-on projects. Some of the activities that campers participated in included:

– Learn to create products such as t-shirts and mouse pads using art produced by students;

– Shoot, edit and act in an original short film;

– Imagine new flavors of ice cream, find ways to market these flavors and share ice cream products with all campers;

– Navigate a smoky labyrinth wearing personal protective equipment;

– Use clues such as footprints to learn more about a crime scene;

– Creation of a game board using manufacturing processes; and

– Visit of Moody’s Collision Center in Sanford.

About 115 students attended the camp, and the post-camp polls were very positive, with 100% of respondents indicating that they would recommend this camp to a friend, attend it again, and consider SRTC for their high school program. because of this camp.

During the weeks of June 14-17 and June 21-24, the Sanford Regional Tech Center hosted our very first in-person event. "SRTC Camp"

“My daughters had a fantastic time,” said a parent whose children attended the camp. “It was their very first camp experience and it exceeded both my expectations and their expectations. They not only had fun, but they learned new skills. The staff were also super friendly and welcoming. We will definitely consider going back. Thank you very much for a great week! ”

During the weeks of June 14-17 and June 21-24, the Sanford Regional Tech Center hosted our very first in-person event. "SRTC Camp"

Students from SRTC partner districts were eligible to attend the camp. These include Kittery School Department, RSU 21, RSU 35, RSU 57, MSAD 60, Sanford School Department, Wells-Ogunquit Community School District, and York School Department. The programming was sponsored by a grant from the Maine Department of Education.


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Kentucky: $ 75 million to renovate vocational schools

FRANKFORT, KY (STL.News) The Kentucky School Facilities Construction Commission (SFCC) is now accepting applications for $ 75 million grants for the modernization of vocational schools – which is part of the government. Andy Beshear‘s Better Kentucky Plan, which helps create opportunities for families in all corners of the Commonwealth.

“Vocational schools play a crucial role in preparing our employees for the jobs of today and tomorrow,” Governor Beshear said. “My administration will always put education first, and that includes making sure our school facilities have the structural upgrades and technology necessary to serve our students in the future.”

Governor Beshear, through a bipartisan deal with state lawmakers earlier this year, aims to create 14,500 new jobs and help the Commonwealth lead the post-COVID economy. With the passage of bills at the end of the 2021 legislative session, more than $ 750 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds will be used to boost the state’s economy by building new schools , by providing drinking water and expanding access to broadband. To learn more, visit Governor.ky.gov/betterky.

Eligible schools can request up to $ 10 million for renovations. Applications will be accepted until 4:30 p.m. EDT on Friday, August 13. The request has been sent to individual districts that qualify for this funding pool. Funding will be granted by SFCC on September 1.

Local Vocational Education Centers (LAVEC) which are district-managed vocational and technical education centers included in district installation plans are eligible to apply for funding to cover the cost of renovations, which include updating, enlargement, repair, replacement or reconstruction of a structure. Each district can only receive one grant.

Applicants will be scored on the following criteria:

  • Age of current vocational education institution;
  • Financial need;
  • Enrollment in job creation and training programs as a percentage of total district enrollments;
  • Unemployment rate by county in May 2021; and
  • Quality of planning and layout of district facilities.

Applications and supporting documents should be emailed to [email protected] by the August 13 deadline and mailed to 700 Louisville Road, Carriage House, Frankfort, KY, 40601. Incomplete applications will not be taken. considered for financing.


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Florida Senate Speaker Speaks About Red Tide, Reclaimed Water, and Vocational Schools at Ybor Meeting

Florida Senate Speaker Wilton Simpson was a guest at Friday’s Tampa Tiger Bay Club meeting in Ybor City.

He began by discussing the 2021 Florida Legislature Regular and Special Sessions.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s legislative session was marked by budget uncertainty. Florida lawmakers returned to Tallahassee in March facing at least one $ 2 billion budget shortfall driven by lower state taxes and lottery funds.

But in the end they spent a record budget, supported by billions of dollars in federal stimulus funds and rebounding state tax revenues.

“This year we ended the session on a balanced budget,” said Simpson. “Today we have over $ 10 billion in reserves. If we have a hurricane, we have money in the bank to pay for that disaster. “

He summarized other issues addressed by the legislature, including the restoration of the Everglades, the effects of rising sea levels, bonuses for first responders, and raising the minimum wage for state employees to 13 $ per hour.

But he said the biggest challenge Florida faces is population growth.

“The biggest challenge we have going forward is the amount of people moving here,” Simpson said. “We have between 1,000 and 1,500 people a day moving here for a number of reasons. “

In addition to advocating for the construction of more roads to accommodate the growing population, the Senate Speaker explained how this could affect the state’s water supply.

“Anywhere you have a dense population you need sewer lines, you have to capture that,” Simpson said. “Which leads to another problem of reclaimed water. Today in the state of Florida, between 700 and 800 million gallons of collected water will go to the tide. Every part of this water could be used for drinking water to reclaim wetlands for salt water intrusion, all of the above.

The legislature adopted a bill this will require local governments to have a plan for how they will start using reclaimed water.

After completing his summary, the “Tiger Cage” was opened. Members of the Tampa Tiger Bay Club were encouraged to ask thought-provoking and thoughtful questions.

A member asked about the sugar farms around Lake Okeechobee.

Runoff from farms pollutes the lake and this water is dumped on the east and west coasts, where it kills seagrass and is believed to feed toxic algae blooms from red tides.

But Simpson says most of those sugar producers don’t contribute to pollution.

“We have reduced the nutrient load to almost nil for farms that use best management practices,” he said. “When you think of farming, and everyone here has had a nice lunch, I hope. You should say “thank you” and leave it at that. “

A farmer himself, Simpson then asked how much money he received in contributions from “Big Agriculture” and “Big Sugar”.

“A lot,” he said. “If you are a farmer in the legislature, there are many other farmers who will support you. “

The Tiger Bay Club presents a coveted “Garfield” award to the club member who asks the most insightful question, according to a three-judge panel.

Award winner Michael Reeves, a Tampa-based building and plumbing contractor, asked what state officials are doing to support trade schools.

“A lot of people like me, African Americans, have a hard time becoming plumbers and roofers,” Reeves said. “A lot of African Americans don’t have the money to pursue college careers.”

“While we were talking about the economy in Florida, I know for a fact that when it comes to construction, it’s booming. As a business owner, what I feel is that you don’t have the right workforce or the right apprenticeship. What are you doing up there? “

Simpson responded by talking about the importance of strengthening Florida’s education system.

“If you want to break generational poverty in this state, you’re going to do it because you have the right K-12 system,” Simpson said.

“We have continuously followed the K-12 model to try to inject more professional opportunities. And again, as Tallahassee, we invest resources, but we don’t dictate how (districts use them). But we do fund professional work opportunities statewide.

Simpson has one more session as President of the Senate and is expected to run for the post of Agriculture Commissioner by a wide margin.


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Deputy Director appointed for LeCroy Career Technical Center – The Clanton Advertiser

By JOYANNA LOVE / Editor-in-chief

Alfredia Shavers has been appointed Deputy Director of the LeCroy Career Technical Center.

She said she was honored and touched by this opportunity.

“I am very blessed,” Shavers said. “… Just knowing that you are where you are supposed to be, doing what you are supposed to do to achieve your goal is very humbling to me, and I appreciate it.” “

Its goal will be to help students make the transition and overcome any obstacles to starting a career, as well as “having those relationships with the instructors to help them do the same.”

“LeCroy Career Tech, we’re just one team and we’re all headed in the same direction,” Shavers said.

The desire to help other teachers led her to want to work in administration.

Seven years ago, she decided she “wanted to do more to help more people” beyond a classroom.

She received her certification in educational leadership from the University of West Alabama to prepare for an administrative role.

“I’ve also been involved with Mr. (Jason) Griffin (CCS Superintendent) over the past few years in the budding group of directors he had on the board,” said Shavers. “… I wanted and waited for the right door to open.”

For her, the program allowed her to show her the administrator’s point of view.

Although education was Shavers’ second career, she had been interested in becoming an educator from a young age.

“When I was 13, I remember telling my mom I was going to be a teacher,” Shavers said.

She had completed the health sciences program at LCTC while a student at Chilton County High School. She became a dental assistant and later a dental hygienist.

When she could, Shavers returned to school to complete her bachelor’s degree and later her master’s degree in special education.

She has worked in Chilton County schools since 1998. Her first position in the system was as a special education teacher. Later, she became an elementary school teacher.

For the past four years, she has been a Specialized Educator for LCTC, the SPAN Program and the PASS Academy.


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Lawmaker urged to inject billions of dollars into vocational schools

BOSTON – As businesses warn of worker shortages and thousands of potential students stranded on waiting lists, lawmakers and lawyers urged the legislature this week to pump billions of dollars into Massachusetts vocational and technical schools and reform their admissions policies.

A steady stream of speakers called during an education committee hearing for radical state action to strengthen the state’s capacity to educate adolescents and adults in high-demand occupations and address the inequalities that prevent some students from accessing life-changing training programs.

An omnibus bill that has received significant support combines $ 3 billion in guarantees to renovate, expand and construct vocational and technical school buildings with a series of policy changes aimed at accelerating public investment in the field.

“There just isn’t enough capacity in our system to meet the demand for vocational technical education from students, parents and employers,” said Steve Sharek, executive director of the Massachusetts Association of Vocational Administrators. “We don’t have enough regional voc-techs, and the ones we have are often too small and too old. Even some of the newer, more recently renovated ones were not built to meet the capacity of their regions.

Representative Frank Moran, who co-tabled the House version of the bill, said the strengthened capital infrastructure would help achieve more equitable access to vocational education, especially for students of color.

“This funding will go a long way in ensuring that communities like Lawrence and other Gateway Cities are able to provide leading professional learning opportunities for a student who wishes to pursue a career in the trades,” said Moran. , himself a graduate of the Grand Lawrence. Technical school, told colleagues.

In addition to authorizing $ 3 billion in bonds through the Massachusetts School Building Authority for investment in voc technology, the sweeping bill would create a Vocational Technical Education Funding Commission for investigate long-term issues of how to pay for expanded skills-based training programs. in Massachusetts and would establish an office of technical vocational education within the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

It would also allow the long-term rental of buildings so that more schools can offer hands-on training programs and would allow towns and villages to remove vocational school payments from their local tax levy cap, thus easing budget pressure. , according to a summary of the Alliance for Vocational Technical Education bill.

Elected officials continue to point to vocational and technical education as a path to stable, well-paying jobs for Massachusetts students and adults seeking a career change. However, demand far exceeds the space available in state schools, and the cost of increasing capacity is emerging as a major obstacle.

Several speakers have warned that inaction will slow the state’s recovery from the pandemic and the economic devastation it has caused.

Nina Hackel, who owns a kitchen and bathroom remodeling company called Dream Kitchens, told the committee that her business could be set to grow 30-40% from last year, but that she won’t be able to do it because “we don’t have enough artisans. . “

“It is a crying shame,” she said. “The trades are screaming. We need to stop selecting our children to enter business school on criteria that primarily help them in college. We must make our trade schools work on the creation of trades. We really need to make that available to the 8,000, maybe 10,000 kids who would like to come in. “

“Our economy is being ruined because we don’t have enough professional places to meet our needs,” Hackel added.

Education advocates have also lobbied the state to take action to update admissions policies at dozens of vocational and technical schools in Massachusetts, in some cases calling for a more aggressive response than the regulations implemented by the Baker administration.

A bill from Senator John Cronin of Lunenburg would require all vocational schools to select incoming classes using a lottery, replacing the current system in which students can be admitted based on their grades, attendance, discipline, guidance from guidance counselors, and sometimes interviews – all of which create disproportionate barriers for communities of color.

“We currently have a system of vocational schools that selectively enroll more privileged students, thereby contributing to the state’s large and persistent disparities in race, income, language and disability in student achievement and high school drop-out and drop-out rates, ”said Dan French, president of Citizens for Public Schools and member of the Vocational Education Justice Coalition.

A DESE analysis released in February found that Massachusetts had about 1.75 full student applications for vocational education for every available program seat. Students of color, those from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, English language learners and students with disabilities “received fewer offers of admission” compared to their peers, according to the analysis.

Last month, the State Council for Primary and Secondary Education approved new regulations for the 2022-2023 school year, removing the requirement that grades, attendance, disciplinary records and recommendations of counselors should be used as technical and professional admission criteria.

The regulations authorized Commissioner Jeff Riley to intervene in the event of non-compliance. Riley said he plans to “be very energetic” and may choose to require schools to use a lottery system.

Speaking in favor of the Cronin bill, French said he believes lawmakers should go even further and impose a raffle of students to be admitted when nominations exceed available seats.

“The regulations give vocational schools the responsibility for interpreting this standard and still allow them to include grades, discipline, attendance, recommendations and interviews with certain restrictions,” he said.


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Lawmaker urged to inject billions of dollars into vocational schools

BOSTON – As businesses warn of worker shortages and thousands of potential students stranded on waiting lists, lawmakers and lawyers urged the legislature this week to pump billions of dollars into Massachusetts vocational and technical schools and reform their admissions policies.

A steady stream of speakers called during an education committee hearing for radical state action to strengthen the state’s capacity to educate adolescents and adults in high-demand occupations and address the inequalities that prevent some students from accessing life-changing training programs.

An omnibus bill that has received significant support combines $ 3 billion in guarantees to renovate, expand and construct vocational and technical school buildings with a series of policy changes aimed at accelerating public investment in the field.

“There just isn’t enough capacity in our system to meet the demand for vocational technical education from students, parents and employers,” said Steve Sharek, executive director of the Massachusetts Association of Vocational Administrators. “We don’t have enough regional voc-techs, and the ones we have are often too small and too old. Even some of the newer, more recently renovated ones were not built to meet the capacity of their areas.

Representative Frank Moran, who co-tabled the House version of the bill, said the strengthened capital infrastructure would help achieve more equitable access to vocational education, especially for students of color.

“This funding will go a long way in ensuring that communities like Lawrence and other Gateway Cities are able to provide leading professional learning opportunities for a student who wishes to pursue a career in the trades,” said Moran. , himself a graduate of the Grand Lawrence. Technical school, told colleagues.

In addition to authorizing $ 3 billion in bonds through the Massachusetts School Building Authority for investment in voc technology, the sweeping bill would create a Vocational Technical Education Funding Commission for investigate long-term issues of how to pay for expanded skills-based training programs. in Massachusetts and would establish an office of technical vocational education within the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

It would also allow the long-term rental of buildings so that more schools can offer hands-on training programs and would allow towns and villages to remove vocational school payments from their local tax levy cap, thus easing budget pressure. , according to a summary of the Alliance for Vocational Technical Education bill.

Elected officials continue to point to vocational and technical education as a path to stable, well-paying jobs for Massachusetts students and adults seeking a career change. However, demand far exceeds the space available in schools across the state, and the cost of increasing capacity is emerging as a major hurdle.

Several speakers have warned that inaction will slow the state’s recovery from the pandemic and the economic devastation it has caused.

Nina Hackel, who owns a kitchen and bathroom remodeling company called Dream Kitchens, told the committee that her business could be set to grow 30-40% from last year, but that she won’t be able to do it because “we don’t have enough artisans. . “

“It is a crying shame,” she said. “The trades are screaming. We need to stop selecting our children to enter business school on criteria that primarily help them in college. We must make our trade schools work on the creation of trades. We really need to make that available to the 8,000, maybe 10,000 kids who would like to come in. “

“Our economy is being ruined because we don’t have enough professional places to meet our needs,” Hackel added.

Education advocates have also pushed for the state to take action to update admissions policies at dozens of vocational and technical schools in Massachusetts, in some cases calling for a more aggressive response than regulations implemented by the Baker administration.

A bill by Senator John Cronin of Lunenburg would require all vocational schools to select incoming classes using a lottery, replacing the current system in which students can be admitted based on their grades, attendance, discipline, guidance counselor recommendations and sometimes interviews – all of which create disproportionate barriers for communities of color.

“We currently have a system of vocational schools that selectively enroll more privileged students, thereby contributing to the state’s large and persistent disparities in race, income, language and disability in student achievement and high school drop-out and drop-out rates, ”said Dan French, president of Citizens for Public Schools and member of the Vocational Education Justice Coalition.

A DESE analysis released in February found that Massachusetts had about 1.75 full student applications for vocational education for every available program seat. Students of color, those from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, English language learners and students with disabilities “received fewer offers of admission” compared to their peers, according to the analysis.

Last month, the State Council for Primary and Secondary Education approved new regulations for the 2022-2023 school year, removing the requirement that grades, attendance, disciplinary records and recommendations of counselors should be used as technical and professional admission criteria.

The regulations authorized Commissioner Jeff Riley to intervene in the event of non-compliance. Riley said he plans to “be very energetic” and may choose to require schools to use a lottery system.

Speaking in favor of the Cronin bill, French said he believes lawmakers should go even further and impose a raffle of students to be admitted when nominations exceed available seats.

“The regulations give vocational schools the responsibility for interpreting this standard and still allow them to include grades, discipline, attendance, recommendations and interviews with certain restrictions,” he said.


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After workforce change, lawmakers must provide more resources to vocational schools

BOSTON (WWLP) – Massachusetts’ workforce has changed over time and the focus is now on the skilled trades.

The pandemic has shown us that the demand for carpentry, electrical and plumbing among other trades is higher than we thought. That’s why lawmakers want to remove some of the barriers students face when trying to enter a Voc technical high school.

To enter a Massachusetts trade school, students must have good grades, good attendance, and recommendations from their teachers. A new bill on Beacon Hill would remove some of these barriers by admitting students using a lottery system. This decision alone is one that advocates say will help low-income students get well-paying jobs right out of high school.

“Make sure students know that this is an option for them, that they can do it, and that they can have a job that earns $ 70, 80, 90 or even $ 100,000 or more per year, and you don’t don’t have a six-figure student loan. debt, ”Senator Eric Lesser told 22News.

The bill would also increase the number of programs offered by schools of technology so that students can train for jobs related to clean energy, such as installing solar panels and maintaining wind turbines.

The bill had its first hearing before the education committee on Tuesday, lawmakers in that committee told 22News they hoped to send it to the prosecution for a full vote in the coming weeks.


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