Linden-Kildare receives JET grant
The Texas Workforce Commission’s Julian Alvarez presented a check for $69,986 from the Jobs and Education for Texans (JET) program to Linden-Kildare CISD last week.
The grant will help the district purchase and install equipment to provide 60 students with training for careers in the food services profession.
“One of our goals at Linden-Kildare is to prepare our kids for life after school so that if they want to go to college, we want to do everything we can and have all kinds of dual credit options and those kinds of things -- but if they want to go to work we want to give them skills needed to get to work,” said Linden-Kildare Superintendent Trevor Rogers.
“I would be remiss and probably shot if I don’t give Mary Dowd the credit for writing the grant,” Rogers continued. “We are very blessed to have Mary Dowd and I also want to thank Keri Winters, our high school principal, for working with us to create a vision and plan for the JET grant.”
The JET program’s purpose is to provide funding for equipment to eligible educational institutions for developing career and technical education courses.
The equipment must be used to train students in high-demand occupations that include food service managers, first-line supervisors of food preparation and serving workers and food batch-makers.
“We have no doubt the benefits that this program will give to our kids, to help them to be a better skilled laborer force,” said Rogers.
This is the first round of grants through JET for independent school districts. Before this the grants were awarded to technical colleges.
Only 15 schools in Texas were awarded grants through the JET program in the first round of grants.
Commissioner Alvarez signed an oversized check at a ceremony in Linden on Friday, Feb. 25.
“Mary Dowd, I want you to be close to me when I sign this check in just a few moments because if it wasn’t for your creativity and efforts, we wouldn’t have this opportunity,” said Alvarez. “I would also like to recognize the executive director of Workforce Solutions of Northeast Texas, Randy Reed, and without his office this wouldn’t have been possible.”
Legislation has expanded the qualified JET applicants to include independent school districts. Each biennium Texas Workforce Commission allocates $10 million, $5 million for community and technical colleges and $5 million for ISDs.
“One of things that I have experienced here in this community and in Texarkana is how you all work together -- you just don’t see that everywhere,” said Alvarez.