Another Brick in the Wall

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Students in the Career Technical program at Selma High School are proving their worth around campus, according to the school’s faculty.

Last year the brick masonry class created a border around the flower beds in front of the school library.

More recently, students in the program used their skills to remove an air conditioner unit from the office of Faye Green, the Career Tech Education Coordinator.

“They did a great job replacing the bricks in the wall,” Green said, pointing to several gray concrete bricks on the wall across from her desk. “Once it’s painted, you won’t be able to tell there was an air conditioner there.”

But the program is more than just free labor for the school. The projects are just a small part of the students’ training before entering Selma’s workforce.

According to the school’s annual report card, 72.1 percent of students in the 2003-04 year were enrolled in the Career Tech program. Slightly more than 97 percent found a job in a related field or enrolled in college.

“When I became the Career Tech Coordinator, Superintendent (James) Carter told me he wanted to take Career Tech to the next level,” Green said. “I believe we have done that.”

Three of Selma High’s Career Tech programs- Family Life, Business/Marketing, and Drafting and Design-received their Business Industry Certification (BIC) recently.

“The BIC is done on a cycle. Last year all of our programs had to be certified, while this year it was only three,” Green said. “All of our programs are now 100 percent certified.”

The other programs offered in the Career Tech program include Family and Consumer Science Education, Health Science, Ag Science Education, and Technical Education, Computer Electronics and Automotive Service Technology.

The BIC certification means the classes have all the materials and equipment needed to teach students a particular trade or skill.

“The state provides us with an equipment list,” Green said. “In order to get BIC certified, everything must be up to par.”

Along with teaching students a trade or skill, Green said she also works to ensure there will be jobs available once they graduate.

Green said she does assessments of area businesses to find out if they are hiring, how many people, and what skills are needed.

“We do these assessments to find out what classes our students need to take,” Greens said. “We also try to expose them to places that are hiring by taking them on field trips.”

Green said she attributes the success of the Selma High’s Career Tech program to the support of the superintendent and Principal Joe Peterson, along with plenty of talented teachers.

“We try to get (teachers) who are well-qualified and other people want,’ Green said.

After graduation, Green said she tries to encourage students to go on to college to advance their training.

“The Career Tech program is moving,” she said. “And were are always recruiting more students.”