Georgia embraces German apprenticeship model

Georgia wants to see more students in apprentice programs.
(BEN BAXTER/SPECIAL)

The German apprenticeship program is held up as a model worldwide. I am delighted to learn Georgia is seeking to bring the idea to its high schools.

From the Lt. Governor’s office:

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle launched the Georgia Consortium of Advanced Technical Training (GA CATT) Program, the first of its kind in the United States, today with the Central Educational Center, Coweta County’s College and Career Academy. The program unites the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern U.S., Inc. with the Technical College System of Georgia and eight Coweta County manufacturing companies. Beginning in the 10th grade, high school students will now have the opportunity to complete their education with a high school diploma, German apprenticeship certificate and an associate degree in Industrial Mechanics through West Georgia Technical College.

“Today is the culmination of many months of hard work and dedication by numerous stakeholders to ensure our high school students have access to the world-renowned German apprenticeship model right in here in Georgia,” said Lt. Gov. Cagle. “Georgia is the first state to secure these kinds of dynamic workforce development opportunities in the nation and our students will see tremendous benefits from this revolutionary program. We will begin by selecting 11 10th grade students to take part in this world-class program and I look forward to expanding this model across the state for years to come.”

Lt. Gov. Cagle joined representatives from the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern U.S., Inc., the Technical College System of Georgia, West Georgia Technical College and the Central Educational Center to sign the memorandum of understanding, formalizing the agreement between all stakeholders to begin the inaugural program, known as GA CATT.

GA CATT will allow students to begin their apprenticeship in 10th grade with a combination of traditional high school classes, college level manufacturing courses, and apprenticeship modules that will pay $8/hour. By the 12th grade, students will spend 80 percent of their day learning at the manufacturing site earning $12/hour. The German model has proven effective in securing skilled labor while increasing student motivation by securing a professional career track for students at no additional cost for them or their families.

The corporations taking part in this pilot program include Grenzebach, E.G.O. North America, Yamaha, Kason, Yokogawa, Winpak, Chromalloy and Groov-Pin. They will work in conjunction with Coweta County School System to ensure the curriculum is relevant to the employment needs facing each company while hosting student apprentices through their work based learning. The Coweta County Development Authority, along with Georgia Institute of Technology’s Georgia Manufacturing Extension Project and Center for Young Worker Safety and Health, will serve GA CATT in an oversight and advisement role as they were essential in bringing the various stakeholders together to make this program a reality for Georgia students.

The Georgia General Assembly acted in the interest of forward thinking dual enrollment programs with the passage of Senate Bill 2 during the 2015 Legislative Session. Now, local boards of education have the ability to award a high school diploma to students who dual enroll while they fulfill specific high school requirements along with specific college requirements. Coweta County’s Central Educational Center, their College and Career Academy, will be instrumental in this process as they will provide primary support for students interested in the program, manage the apprenticeship modules and track the overall educational status of the enrolled students.

GA CATT is projected to accept 11 students as part of the inaugural program this fall. This competitive program currently has 19 students who tested program ready and are now under consideration. Lt. Gov. Cagle is hopeful this model can be incorporated in numerous school districts throughout the state as Georgia continues to better prepare high school students for the evolving and dynamic workforce that awaits them after graduation.

Reader Comments 0

19 comments
Bill72
Bill72

Here's the problem.....more often than not,

these kind of workforce training programs are nothing more than free or cheap labor for the companies who participate.  Question....will the company be required to keep the apprentice when the course is completed?  The job training landscape is rife with programs and initiatives where once the person has completed the training program the company lets him/her go and returns to the pool for more cheap labor. 

Bill Fisher
Bill Fisher

Why is mary elizabeth sings allowed to hijack this column with stories of slavery 200 years ago?

jaggar1
jaggar1

Georgia is way behind in education. Every school system should be providing a vocational track. CCSD should be partnering with Chattahoochee Tech. and Cosmetology Schools to provide another avenue for kids who don't want to go to college. It is shameful that we don't offer any other options. We are the only country that doesn't have other options. The thought that every kid should go to college is ridiculous. College is so out of control expensive that isn't an option for some kids. Georgia needs to get it together!

Petra Struck-Lagasse
Petra Struck-Lagasse

Meanwhile in Germany the push to college is so overwhelming they can't find anyone to fill their apprentice slots and in the US we have 11 students and probably 1000s more who would love the opportunity to learn/earn because they can't afford college. Maybe send them to Germany?

Legong
Legong

Only eleven kids will take part initially? Are they kidding? We should have been offering a substitute education pathway, to the masses, for decades now.

And it shouldn't be piled on top of all the standard high school graduation requirements: It should largely replace them.

AvgGeorgian
AvgGeorgian

@Legong

Reading between the lines, it looks like they are using Senate Bill 2 to do exactly what you said they should do-use college classes and apprenticeship hours to replace some of the traditional HS diploma requirements.


"GA CATT will allow students to begin their apprenticeship in 10th grade with a combination of traditional high school classes, college level manufacturing courses, and apprenticeship modules that will pay $8/hour. By the 12th grade, students will spend 80 percent of their day learning at the manufacturing site earning $12/hour."



MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

I find this very interesting in that Thomas Jefferson was trying to adopt a German apprenticeship program as a working model to replace slavery in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Even though Jefferson was not successful in his attempts to adopt that German model, Monticello, however, did embrace many apprenticeship training programs for slaves including such trades as manufacturing nails, culinary arts, and others.  Jefferson allowed some of his slaves to work for profit (for themselves) at other plantations or places of business, at times, on a trust basis that they would return to Jefferson when the jobs were completed.  Jefferson had also hired some German tradesmen to train his slaves in various trades.  His last two sons by Sally Hemings were trained in trade by their own Uncle, John Hemings, on Jefferson's plantation before Jefferson freed all three in his will when he died.  One son was 18, the other was 21, and John Hemings was in his mid-30s.  They could make it on their own, when freed, as a result.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@OriginalProf @MaryElizabethSings


That may be true, but I would remind you that Thomas Jefferson was an individual, as were all of the slave masters.  Please do not generalize about his motivations based on assumptions related to what other slave masters did, in that day. 



Please, also, read the various books on Jefferson by historian and Jefferson expert, Dr. Saul Padover, many of whose sources for understanding the mind and spirit of Jefferson reside in the Library of Congress.


MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@OriginalProf @MaryElizabethSings


 As I have said previously, your assessments, intellectually, appear to be based much too much on generalizations, imo.
I will not question the caliber of your reading material, as you have mine in ignorance. Over the expanse of my lifetime I have read quite a few more books than you are aware. Please do not preach to me.
I will state, however, that it is the caliber of one's thinking related to what one has read, not the enormity of what one has read, that matters. In my opinion, your analytical skills are weak.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@OriginalProf @MaryElizabethSings


And, the "source" I had reference to in the Library of Congress was not "books" in general but the personal witness of Thomas Jefferson's granddaughter, as recorded in her diary, in the Library of Congress.

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

@OriginalProf @MaryElizabethSings

I am interested to read a book about slavery that characterizes Jefferson, specifically, in the manner of your responses to MES.  What title would you suggest?

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@EdJohnson @OriginalProf @MaryElizabethSings


Dr. Saul Padover's book, leading authority on Thomas Jefferson, entitled simply "Jefferson," (Padover wrote many books on Jefferson.) as well as Dr. Annette Gordon-Hemings, "The Hemingses of Monticello."


Sorry, Ed Johnson, I had thought that your question had been directed to me, in a quick reading.  However, I will leave my recommended books on Jefferson stated, here, for anyone who may be interested.

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

@MaryElizabethSings @OriginalProf

MaryElizabethSings, no problem, and thank you for the lead to Dr. Saul Padover.  I see he left us in 1981.  His “Thomas Jefferson on Democracy” grabs my interest, so I’ve put it on my to-purchase list.

OriginalProf, again, what title would you recommend that characterizes Jefferson, specifically, in the manner of your responses to MaryElizabethSings?

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

@MaryElizabethSings @OriginalProf @EdJohnson

MaryElizabethSings, funny how The Universe connects things.  Now Dr. Saul Padover himself interests me.  That’s because, according a NY Times article, Padover served with the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) during WWII and “saw action in Normandy, participated in the liberation of Paris and went through the campaign in Germany.  President Harry S. Truman, in awarding him the Bronze Star with five battle stars, praised him in a special citation for having obtained ‘at considerable risk’ intelligence information upon which important policies were based.”

The OSS was much an autonomous intelligence-gathering organization, as was the Army Security Agency (ASA), in which I served.  The ASA motto was “Semper Vigilis (Vigilant Always), which echoes Thomas Jefferson's declaration that ‘The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.’"

OriginalProf, thanks for the titles recommended.  My cursory exploration of them suggests relevance to understanding brutal machinations of slavery, generally, which can be sustenance to the Black racialist mind, about which Frederick Douglass warned would be crippling.  Still, none of the three titles seem to speak to Jefferson, specifically, and in the manner of your responses to MaryElizabethSings.  For example, Elizabeth Genovese’s Within the Plantation Household is the author’s argument that “the lives of antebellum southern women, enslaved and free, differed fundamentally from those of northern women and that it is not possible to understand antebellum southern women by applying models derived from New England sources.”  So it’s hard to imagine specificity about Jefferson in the title.  Is there in the index of each title you recommend even an entry for Jefferson, specifically?

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

@OriginalProf @EdJohnson @MaryElizabethSings

Sorry to see you cut and run but, frankly, no, you have not given what I asked for.  Moreover, I suggest you can’t and therefore you owe MaryElizabethSings an apology.  If you were to remove for a second the Black racialist blinders, you might see the door was politely opened for you to do so.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@OriginalProf @EdJohnson @MaryElizabethSings


"Generally speaking, MES seems to show a lack of knowledge about slavery that those books should correct; and she seems an apologist for slavery (one who argues that  slavery ultimately benefits the slaves). , ."

+++++++++++++++++++++++++


Your assessment of my knowledge and my thinking is wrong on both counts regarding slavery, Original Prof.  I have an excellent knowledge about slavery and I am no apologist for slavery.


As I mentioned earlier, your analytical skills, in my opinion, are weak.


And, let us be honest here.  My one post on Jefferson's idea of using German tradesmen as a bridge and model to alleviating slavery in America, eventually, was not only true but on target to a comparison with the German trade model presented in this thread. 


It was you who sought to turn the focus of conversation to Jefferson's intent (which you do not know) and to make this matter personal, unfortunately.