Mayor: Planned Technical School a 'Game Changer'

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Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski (file photo) Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski (file photo)

The mayor of Lafayette says a new technical high school will be a big key to the city’s future. Tony Roswarski says the city is working with local school corporations and some private schools to develop the vocational tech career high school, which will be aimed at students who opt not to pursue a four-year degree. The Lafayette School Corporation has purchased a building for the new school and is investing several millions of dollars to renovate it.

In in interview with Inside INdiana Business, Roswarski said the city loses many students out of high school that don't go on to get even a two-year degree or certification. "We want to capture those kids early on, starting in their freshman year (and) get them excited about advanced manufacturing. We want to get them involved so we don't lose them to maybe going into fast food and some other things like that and show them a new path. We'll be able to run about 800-900 kids a year through there and, for me, I think that's a game changer for our workforce development going forward."

Roswarski says the goal is to have the school open by 2020. He says the school will be a collaborative process involving the city, local school corporations and community and business leaders in the area.

"There's this big group of people that involve local government and lots of businesses," Roswarski said. "They've been having several meetings talking about what the school should look like, what kind of equipment should be in there, what the training should be, so there's this collaborative approach with the business community to make that sure (the school) is designed and developed in a way that those kids are going to come out of there and really meet the needs of the future."

The mayor says companies such as Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc., Wabash National Corp. (NYSE: WNC) and Caterpillar Inc. have been involved in the collaborative process.

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