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Course overhaul planned at High Tech before 2009

By Staff | Nov 25, 2008

Some courses at High Tech North will receive an overhaul for the 2009 to 2010 school year, according to officials from the school. In conjunction with the Florida Department of Education, the north Cape Coral technical school will offer some of its longer programs in two parts.

High Tech North has adult education courses for residents of Cape Coral and provides an alternative education track for students in the Lee County School District. Its programs include practical nursing, culinary arts, digital design and Web programming.

Bob Fain, assistant director of High Tech North, explained that the school is breaking apart some of its programs. The commercial art program is normally a 1,500-hour program, but next year it will be broken up into commercial arts I and II, both 750-hour programs.

“It will make it so a person can go through 750 hours and receive a certificate for that program,” said Fain.

Faculty members at High Tech North worked side by side with the FDOE in determining how each of the programs could be modified. On Tuesday, Fain said a total of five programs at the school will be split and officials are considering the measure with practical nursing and computer aided design.

“It comes from the Department of Education who have looked at this the last couple of years,” he said.

The FDOE’s Division of Work Force Education has the responsibility of aligning work force education programs with skills that are needed in the job market. Career and technical schools across the state educated a total of 513,774 students in 2006 to 2007.

State law requires curriculum to be updated every three years for the benefit of the students.

Students at High Tech North can expect a number of changes for the 2009 to 2010 school year, including a new course catalogue. Instructors will also have to redesign their curriculum to cover all of the certifiable skills in a shorter period of time.

The school administration also is working on changes to billing. Fain said it is likely that the school will begin charging by the semester, instead of charging for an entire yearlong program, and later reimburse students for any unused time.

He stressed though that no decision has been made.

“We are still working on the billing part of this,” he said. “That hasn’t been decided.”