ATLANTA – The state is awarding more than $200,000 in grants to help 15 school districts improve the alignment of their technical education programs with local industry needs.

The districts will use the one-time-only grants to conduct in-depth reviews of workforce needs in their communities, working with the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government, and work to address gaps between those needs and their Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education (CTAE) programs.

“Preparing the next generation of hardworking Georgians to lead successful careers in all parts of our state is one of our top priorities,” Gov. Brian Kemp said. “These grants will help schools connect their students with the thousands of opportunities available to them in fast-growing fields.”

“It’s our goal that every student in Georgia will graduate ready for their next step after high school,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods added. “The Georgia Works Alignment Grant will help us ensure graduates can pursue fulfilling, high-paying careers without having to leave home.”

The grants will go to the school districts in Chatham, Clarke, Clayton, Crisp, Effingham, Fulton, Harris, Jackson, Murray, Muscogee, Oconee, Peach, Tattnall, and White counties. and to the Marietta City school district. The funds were awarded through a competitive allocation process.

The Georgia Department of Education and the Vinson Institute released a toolkit last fall giving schools and school districts guidance in connecting education and industry. The project was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Commerce.