Pennsylvania Downgrades Status Of Vending Repair Program; School District Calls On Vending Industry To Petition In Support Of The Program

The State of Pennsylvania has removed the Vending Repair Program from “High Priority Occupation” list for career and technical education (CTE) programs, which will result in less funding for the program currently housed at the Randolph Skills Center in Philadelphia. In response, the School District of Philadelphia is appealing this decision.

The school district has asked vending industry members to contact the Office of Career & Technical Education in Philadelphia and ask them to change this decision. The address is listed below.

Bud Burke, chairman of the program’s advisory board, said the decision was based on the incorrect belief that the vending industry does not have an important enough need for vending repair technicians. The program currently has an 85 percent job placement rate. 

Vending repair has always been listed under “small appliance repair,” and because of this, the state felt justified in removing the designation, Burke noted.

Burke called on industry members to contact Charles Lewis, construction/manufacturing industry development specialist at [chalewis@philasd.org].

The letters should contain information that has to do with jobs, that there are jobs for the students that graduate from the program, Burke noted.

“I need you to take a few minutes from your busy schedules and write a letter of support,” Burke said in an email to industry members, many of whom have employed program graduates.

Burke asked those who send letters and/or emails to copy him on the correspondence. Burke’s email is bud@thayerdist.com.

Charles Lewis can be reached at the following address: Office of Career & Technical Education, 440 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130.

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