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Merger would hurt education

I am writing today because every citizen in Georgia should flood Gov. Perdue (Georgia.Governor@gov.state.ga.us), Lt. Gov. Cagle (CaseyCagle@ltgov.ga.gov), and State Sen. Seth Harp (Chairman of the Senate Higher Education Committee—seth.harp@senate.ga.gov) with e-mails to voice they’re against the merger of Georgia’s two-year colleges with the technical schools.

Please consider the three bullet points below as:

1) Unlike technical schools, two-year colleges prepare students for their junior and senior college years. They also teach students to think critically, become engaged scholars and produce leaders in the community. Technical schools also play an important role in Georgia’s education, but it is a different role. They prepare students for immediate entry into the workplace. They teach students a specific skill. Both are needed and both need to maintain their separate roles for Georgia’s students.

2) Two-year colleges are the only point of access to the four-year institutions for many students (non-traditional students; remedial students; ESL students; students who have made poor choices). Without this point of entry, many Georgia students will be denied a University System of Georgia education. As a product of the two-year college system, I am a testament of its results.

3) Two-year colleges in Georgia transfer approximately 50,000 students a year to four-year colleges and universities. Transfers will decrease, resulting in a decline in the number of classes offered and in the budgets received at the USG four-year institutions. As a result, faculty and staff may lose their jobs.

I thank you for your time and please ask that you write your state senator and the aforementioned officials and ask that do not approve the merger/absorption of Georgia’s two-year colleges with its technical schools.

Sincerely,

Tom Caiazzo, Ph.DStatesboro, Ga.