The 'missing piece' from career academies
Starkey just returned from a trip to Germany and Austria (on her own dime, before you ask), where she visited several apprenticeship programs to see how businesses and schools there collaborate. Now she's raring to emulate the model here.
She spoke at length with the Gradebook about how the European students get hands-on preparation in a factory, along with lessons in language, the economy, and even athletics and team-building. It's like Florida's move to career academies, she said, "but it takes it a step further. ... To me, it's the missing piece of the career academies."
Starkey and the others she traveled with are preparing an executive summary and a report that they plan to share with local leaders, as well as with Florida officials, in hopes of adapting the apprenticeship idea into Florida's education plans. "I think our leaders need to see what they (in Europe) are doing," Starkey said.
Pasco and Pinellas already have embarked upon a small-scale program for engineering students. Read about it here.