Cassia teachers learn how to meet needs of local employers

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BURLEY, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - In place of a departmental meeting for career and technical educators at Cassia schools, teachers and administrators engaged in a question and answer session with a panel of local industry and business leaders.

From McCain Foods to Dairy West and Norco, representatives covered topics such as what they expect in an interview and top qualities they look for in an employee. These top qualities include communication, professionalism, forward thinking and passion.

"If we want our kids to stay here in the area and to work for these companies in the area, we need to prepare them so that they can take those jobs when they graduate high school," said Curtis Richins, the Career and Technical Education (CTE) administrator in Cassia School District.

From the meeting, teachers will adjust their training to meet those needs of the businesses.

"The companies here are very well paying companies. We have more companies moving in, and the companies here are expanding all the time and they need workers in this area," explained Richins. "These kids are really hard workers and they're really smart and they want to do a good job and so that's what our employers are looking for."

Richins told KMVT they held a successful panel discussion last year and some teachers took a tour of DOT Foods and other companies at a later date.

"We had the plant manager of DOT Foods give us a mathematics test that they gave to screen employees. We took that mathematical test and I delivered it to the principals in the all high school and all the counselors so they could say, 'OK, this is what the companies are looking for. These are the math skills they're looking for,' and so we in CTE were able to kind of fine tune our math teaching skills and the skills the kids need for those particular type of jobs," said Richins.

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