Rita F. Silva: Defunding ag programs not smart

March 20, 2014 

I was outraged to read that Gov. Jerry Brown has decided to defund the school agriculture programs and use the money for other educational purposes. We need more trade schools, internships and programs to prepare students for jobs that do not require a college degree.

Why do so many people think that every child needs a college education? What about our farmers, electricians, plumbers, mechanics, welders and carpenters? There are so many professions that need training that do not require a college degree. Many people in these professions make more than a lot of college graduates, and yet the educational community looks down on them because they don’t have a “degree.”

How many young people do you know who have finished college, have a mountain of debt, and are working at low-paying jobs because they cannot find a job in their chosen field? We spend more per student than almost every other state and most countries, so more money is not going to solve our education problems. And defunding the successful trade programs that we have is only going to make it worse.

I am calling my representative today and I urge everyone to do the same.

RITA F. SILVA

Los Banos

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