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College and Career Academy idea is a winner

I was interested to see Terry Garlock’s column in support of a College and Career Academy as an integral part of the high school system.

It seems nice that CCA provides extra college prep courses, but the advantage that caught my eye are the technical and soft skills taught to better prepare graduates for the workplace.

I remember when kids in middle school started learning some basic life skills in wood and metal shop. Those days are gone and our kids grow up not even knowing how to turn a wrench. That’s pathetic.

I’m a master mason. My company, Classic Stone and Masonry, focuses on small commercial and municipal construction projects that require deep masonry skills.

As a member of the Georgia Masonry Association, I am a supporter of our apprentice program that gives trainees the depth of hands-on and classroom experience they need over a three-year program to become a journeyman mason.

Our problem is we can’t find enough decent quality people to commit to the training program.

With so many older masons retiring without younger journeymen to step into their place, there’s going to be a severe shortage of masons if this economy ever turns around and construction activity picks up.

The College and Career Academy, where our kids can learn some real work skills, is a move in the right direction. Maybe our Board of Education members will be smart enough to recognize the old ways are no longer enough.

John Ciancia

Peachtree City, Ga.

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