The Georgia K-12 schools agency retains control over career, technical and agricultural education

6:58 p.m Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018 Education
Bob Andres
Nov. 13, 2015 - Jesus Vazquez works on a MIG welding assignment in welding lab. He is one of the students at Lanier Charter Career Academy that take a welding class at nearby Lanier Technical College. Gov. Nathan Deal’s Education Reform Commission is considering a request that the Technical College System of Georgia replace its admissions test with one that can create a “job ready” certification for skills, from welding to cosmetology, that could be obtained while in high school through dual enrollment in technical colleges. BOB ANDRES / BANDRES@AJC.COM

Ranking members of the Georgia House of Representatives no longer want to immediately shift control over career-oriented education from the state agency for public schools to the one that oversees technical colleges.

House Bill 778 was introduced by the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Terry England, R-Auburn. The bill would have changed the agency that controls content standards, testing, administration and money for career, technical and agricultural education.

The bill had backing from other committee chairmen, but on Thursday England hesitated.

“At this point we’re going to pull that back,” he told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He cited anxiety about change and frustration with rumors.

"There have been a lot of rumors and accusations and so forth about what the bill does and doesn’t do,” he said, adding that his intention was to ensure students have skills needed to get a job.

Currently, the state Department of Education and the state education board oversee these career-oriented programs, along with the rest of K-12 schooling. But HB 778 sought to transfer control to the Technical College System of Georgia’s board. 

England said lawmakers will revisit the issue this summer in Rural Development Council hearings.