By Charles Edwardson
November 17, 2008
I would venture to say the welding program in Ketchikan rivals any in the state and possibly nationwide. The construction academy funded by the state in the past few years is also an indication that we in the vocational trades have known that vocational training is going to be the foundation of economic stability in Alaska. My approach and argument when in Juneau lobbying for Ketchikan Construction Academy funding has and will be, the high schools need to offer vocational training and support for their extracurricular activities (yes, I mean sports). If we want to address the dropout rate, start by offering students options, more activities and more classes that might actually interest them, ie, shop, building tech, welding, marine technology, auto mechanics, small engine repair, fisheries studies,. etc. And get these kids an activities fund to help in their endeavors in other school activities such as band, debate club, pep band, volley ball, track wrestling, on and on.
The No Child Left Behind Act
was a noble attempt at accountability, an attempt that is failing
miserably and the job market and participation in the job market
is proving that. In construction the aging of the work force
is going to be an economic meltdown in the state of Alaska if
we do not address this problem. Thousands of jobs in vocational
fields are opening up in Alaska and we have no one to fill these
jobs because we have not been training our kids in theses fields
in high school since I graduated from Kayhi. A report in the
Ketchikan Daily News on Monday the 17 of November on page 3 states
Alaska's drop out rate far out paces the national average,
About: "Ketchikan resident 45 years"
Received November 17, 2008 - Published November 17, 2008
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