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Rockdale Career Academy program receives $2.7 million grant
DeKalb Tech program to expand
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The State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia recently approved nearly $9 million Career Academy grants for new and expanding career academies, including the Rockdale Career Academy.

The Technical College System of Georgia evaluated eight career academy proposals from across the state before approving four new academies and the expansion of three existing ones. DeKalb Tech received three of the seven grants. The money will fund new facilities in Newton County and the City of Decatur as well as the expansion of the Rockdale Career Academy in Rockdale County.

DeKalb Tech currently partners with Rockdale County on the Rockdale Career Academy. Today's approval by the State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia will expand that existing program with a nearly $2.7 million dollar grant.

After the awards were made official, Technical College System of Georgia Commissioner Ron Jackson said, "The Technical College System of Georgia is proud to support the Career Academies Project that have been championed by Lt. Governor Cagle and supported by Governor Perdue. The academies are unique centers of learning that provide Georgia's high school students with exceptional pathways to rewarding jobs, great careers and an important place in tomorrow's workforce. We are looking forward to a very successful partnership between the technical colleges and each of the school systems that are the recipients of today's grants."

"DeKalb Tech administrators are thrilled by the funding in that the College will be able to offer additional programs and services and reach students that we have not been able to serve before" says Dr. Tanya Gorman, vice president of academic affairs for DeKalb Tech.

DeKalb Tech will partner with the City of Decatur School System for the establishment of the Decatur Career Academy and will team up with Newton County School System for the building of the Newton College & Career Academy.

"We are extremely excited about the possibilities for support of the learning of our students which this grant provides for high school career/technical education," said Newton County School Superintendent Dr. Steve Whatley. He went on to say, "The cooperation of the collegiate, business, governmental and private entities working together to make this a reality is a positive step taken for the educational and economic development for this community." This will be the first partnership of its kind for Newton County Schools and DeKalb Tech.

The Career Academy initiative has been spearheaded by Georgia Lt. Governor Casey Cagle for the past two years. "Today we are one step closer to providing access to a Career Academy to every student in Georgia. During these tough economic times, it is now more important than ever before to give our students the promise of a path to successful career," said Lt. Governor Casey Cagle.

 "The partnerships of local school systems, Technical Colleges and area businesses provide an unbelievable launching pad for Georgia students. Career academies provide a relevant learning environment, a proven record of high graduation rates and 100% job placement or post secondary opportunities."

Other schools that received grants from the state include West Georgia Technical College and Savannah Technical College. West Georgia Tech which will partner with Coweta County to expand Central Education Center. It will also work with Carroll County to create the Carroll County College & Career Academy. Savannah Tech will expand the Gateway Career Academy in conjunction with Chatham County, the cities of Savannah, Port Wentworth, Garden City, Pooler, Thunderbolt and Tybee Island. Savannah Tech will team up with Liberty County to establish the Liberty College & Career Academy.