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District program is standard setter, technically speaking

Author: Bertram Rantin

Source: The State

August 5, 2014

Efforts to equip students with technical skills and prepare them for the professional world have received a national nod in Lexington-Richland 5.

The district’s Center for Advanced Technical Studies has been named a national High Schools That Work Platinum High Achievement School.

The center was one of 29 schools to receive this year’s honor, which is based on the success of local school leaders and teachers in improving school practices and raising student achievement.

The award was presented during the 28th Annual HSTW Staff Development Conference in Nashville, Tenn., last month.

“We are extremely honored to receive this award,” said Bob Couch, the center’s director. “We have set the bar high and accomplished much in our short time since opening the school in 2012. Our programs are providing a pathway for success for students, and we will continue to pursue excellence here at the center.”

The Center for Advanced Technical Studies helps high school students build technical skills, gain professional certifications and earn college credits. The course offerings include biomedical science, auto mechanics, alternative energy, wielding, law enforcement, graphic design, agricultural science, culinary arts and veterinary science.

HSTW is a national school improvement program based on the premise that most students can master rigorous academic and career/technical studies if school leaders and teachers create an environment that motivates all students to make the effort to succeed.

“This (Lexington-Richland 5) school has shown how to raise student achievement with programs that blend college-ready academics and career-technical studies,” said Gene Bottoms, senior vice president of the Southern Regional Education Board and founder of HSTW.

Explorer Post claims national award

Lexington County Sheriff’s Department Explorer Post 106 recently claimed second-place honors at a national Law Enforcement Explorer competition in Bloomington, Ind.

Members of the local Explorer Post earned the finish in the national Crisis Negotiation Scenario event during the competition, held July 14-19 on the Indiana University campus.

The competition featured 2,400 law enforcement Explorers on 216 teams from the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada.

The Explorer program provides training and personal development for teenagers and young adults who are interested in law enforcement careers. Many former Explorer cadets have been hired as full-time deputies through the years.

Explorers Post cadets create fingerprint identification cards for children so they can be identified readily if they are reported missing. They also direct traffic at various businesses during the Christmas holiday shopping season.

Many former Explorer cadets have been hired as full-time deputies.

Explorers must be between ages 14-20, have no criminal record, be enrolled in school and maintain a C grade average.

For more information on the Lexington Explorer program, contact Sgt. Jesse Laintz at (803) 785-2481

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