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Shapiro Administration Highlights How Career and Technical Education Investments Prepare Students for Success, Celebrates Education C.H.A.M.P.I.O.N.S at Keystone Central

05/09/2024

Lock Haven, PA - Today, Secretary of Education Dr. Khalid N. Mumin visited Robb Elementary School and Keystone Central Career and Technical Center (CTC) to highlight how investments in career and technical education help students of all ages learn important skills that will propel them into their future careers and lives.

“I am excited to be joining students and staff in the Keystone Central School District to highlight the importance of investing in our school communities and preparing students that are well-rounded and ready to take on their futures,” said Sec. Mumin. “Students at Robb Elementary are learning what it looks and feels like to be a champion – feeling seen, heard, and loved, and helping others to feel the same. And, students at Keystone Central CTC are using the hands-on experience gained in the classroom to become productive, innovative members of society and the Commonwealth. The commitment of the students and staff at all levels to nurture lifelong learners who are adaptable, resilient, productive, and of high moral character is evident in the way students treat themselves and their peers.”

The Shapiro Administration is committed to making sure students get the support they need to succeed – in school and beyond. In addition to a historic increase in basic education funding, the Governor’s 2023-24 budget secured $23.5 million for career and technical education to prepare more students for skilled careers, $6 million in pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programming, and an additional $3.5 million to fund the Schools-to-Work Program to develop and expand career pathways for high school students. The 2024-25 budget proposal builds on last year’s progress with another $2.4 million investment in career and technical education to ensure all Pennsylvania children have the freedom to chart their own course and the opportunity to succeed. 

Robb Elementary School, a Title I school that enrolls students in kindergarten through fourth grade, challenges students and staff to be champions for themselves and others, helping every learner feel seen, heard, and loved. As part of the school’s C.H.A.M.P.I.O.N (courage, honesty, attitude, motivation, perseverance, integrity, optimism, nice – just be nice) theme, students, local leaders, and community members have had the chance to take part in “Red Carpet Events” and “Champion Walks,” a way to recognize, celebrate, and support students and individuals in Robb Elementary’s school community and community at large. 

Champion walks have been held for sports teams, fine arts clubs, various student groups, Special Olympians, first responders, paraprofessionals, student teachers, district personnel, and now, Dr. Mumin himself!

During the second stop on his visit, Dr. Mumin got a chance to check out the hands-on skills and knowledge students are gaining at the district’s career and technical center. Keystone Central CTC offers a variety of programs, giving students the opportunity to explore careers in fields such as health care, construction, education, emergency and protective services, and more. Students in all programs have the ability to obtain industry certifications, dual enrollment credits, and connect with local business leaders.

Students in all programs graduate prepared to continue their education, join the military, or enter directly into the workforce. Many students hold certifications and positions relevant to their education while still in school. Of the 18 students enrolled in Health Occupations, five are already Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) and five are Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA). In addition, other programs such as Precision Machining and Agriculture Mechanics have apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs, and Construction Trades is partnered with the PA Builders Association and the Clean Energy Center at the Pennsylvania College of Technology.

In addition to continuing support for career and technical education in our schools, the Shapiro Administration’s 2024-25 budget proposal also includes a nearly $1.1 billion increase in basic education funding – the largest in Pennsylvania history. It also includes $300 million for school environmental repairs, $100 million for mental health supports in schools, a $50 million increase for special education funding, increases in career and technical education, a $50 million annual investment in school safety and security improvements, $10 million for the Educator Talent Recruitment Account, and $975 million to the community colleges and PASSHE universities that will comprise a new postsecondary system—a 15 percent increase in the amount of funding those institutions received last year.

For more information on the Pennsylvania Department of Education, please visit the website or follow PDE on FacebookTwitterYouTube, or Pinterest

MEDIA CONTACT: Taj Magruder, tmagruder@pa.gov

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