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November 9, 2012
In Memoriam

Chris Smith (1961-2012)   

The board and staff of the Stark Education Partnership wish to extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Canton Superintendent Chris Smith who passed away last week.

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Complete College Ohio Calls for On-Time Degrees as Stark County Graduates Target Key Disciplines


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On Tuesday November 13th, policy-makers and education leaders will gather in Columbus for the Complete College Ohio Conference[1] to listen to what the Ohio Board of Regents calls "comprehensive and bold new proposals" to graduate more students on time. The proposals can't come too soon.


According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), "Ohio faces a significant workforce challenge that could last up to 20 years" as the state loses workers born during the "baby boom"and a smaller workforce emerges from the "baby bust". Overall, 18.1% of the state's workforce will be reaching retirement age in the next decade.


The department's recent report, Ohio's Aging Labor Force: Recent Trends in Industry Employment[2], notes that sectors that require college degrees will face substantial replacement needs. ODJFS says this creates an additional concern that enough replacements can be trained in time.


Chief among these sectors are educational services, where nearly 30% of the workforce is now 55 or older. Health care has nearly 20% of its workers in the same category as do many professional and scientific fields. Complete College Ohio proposals can assist Stark County high school graduates in relieving part of this shortage. Last year, over 1,300 students who took the ACT test indicated a desire to major in these key disciplines.


Cheryl Rice, Vice President of Student Services and Enrollment Management at Stark State College, serves on the Complete College Ohio Task Force.

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The Stark Education Partnership, Inc., is a 501(c)-3 non-profit education reform support organization in Stark County, Ohio crossing the lines of 17 public school districts. The Partnership collaborates with educators, business, community and civic leaders to create and respond to opportunities that will add substantial and measurable value to education.

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