DANBURY- State Reps. Michael Ferguson (R-138) and Will Duff (R-2) spent the morning of March 14th touring Henry Abbott Technical High and learning about the programs at the school.
Abbott Tech has over 600 students from 18 different towns. The school has undergone major renovations to create new, state-of-the-art shop facilities, computer labs and classrooms.
Both Reps. Duff and Ferguson mentioned how there are bill proposals in the pipeline this legislative session to promote manufacturing jobs in our state including establishing public-private partnerships for apprenticeship programs.
The legislators visited Abbott Tech with the new Superintendent of the Connecticut Technical Education and Career System (CTECS) Jeff Wihbey, as part of his Superintendent Entry Plan. The superintendent and state representatives conducted classroom visits and meets with Abbott Tech’s principal, Stacy Butkus, students, teachers and staff.
While visiting with Abbott Tech officials, the administration mentioned to the two legislators that one of their big issues is how difficult it is to hire teachers and staff in a timely manner due to the slow and bloated state bureaucracy. Both lawmakers agreed that it should be a priority of state government to streamline this process to make it easier, and align with what traditional public school districts procedures are.
Abbott Tech offers a comprehensive high school and Career Technical Education in 12 occupational careers. Each graduate receives a high school diploma and a certificate in their chosen trade. In addition, Abbott Tech serves adult education students in various apprentice and extension courses.