A group of people wearing faces masks tour a workshop with a diesel engine in the foreground.

Education Commissioner Jason E. Glass, second from right, receives a tour of the diesel technology program at the Shelby County Area Technology Center.
Photo by Toni Konz Tatman, May 6, 2021

By Jacob Perkins

Since joining the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) last September, Commissioner of Education Jason E. Glass has been mostly confined to a virtual view of the state’s 51 area technology centers (ATCs). These ATCs are state-operated and serve local districts throughout the state.

On May 5, Glass, alongside other KDE officials, including Associate Commissioner David Horseman of the Office of Career and Technical Education, participated in a tour of Shelby County Public Schools. The visit began with the Shelby County ATC, which houses students from both of the local high schools, Shelby County High School and Martha Layne Collins High School, as well as students from Eminence High School (Eminence Independent) and Spencer County High School.

During the tour, Glass met with students, teachers and school leaders and received an overview of the programs, including business technology, automotive technology, diesel technology and welding.

“One of the key purposes of public education is to prepare students for jobs,” Glass said. “Skills that students acquire in these technology centers are direct connections to the kinds of work that they’ll be doing when they leave our schools.”

A man in a suit leans over a desk, talking to a male student sitting on a stool.

Education Commissioner Jason E. Glass, left, speaks with a student at Shelby County High School.
Photo by Toni Konz Tatman, May 6, 2021

As the district tour continued, Glass and other department staff visited Shelby County High School and Martha Layne Collins High School to view their career and technical education courses and enjoyed a lunch prepared by the Shelby County High School culinary program.

“I think it’s great for the staff and students to see that our state leaders in education are getting out and visiting them and hearing from them directly,” Glass said.