Tennessee Governor Visits Obion County Schools

Lauren Kendall

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Governor greeted by Tim Watkins, OCS Superintendent, George Leake, High School Supervisor and CTE Director, and Benny McGuire, OC Mayor.Lauren Kendall

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee and his entourage stopped by Obion County Central High School (OCCHS) yesterday on their way back to Nashville to see the Mechatronics Lab. The class teaches students a wide set of mechatronic engineering skills, such as: electrical, mechanical, software, and computer engineering. These skills are then used to operate, create, and maintain smart technologies in the workforce. As the world continues to become more technologically advanced, smart technology continues to be applied more and more in different fields, making it necessary for students to be taught these ever-evolving skills.

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Governor with Mechatronics' students.Lauren Kendall

While the visit was only planned to last for a few minutes, a few minutes was suddenly an hour as Governor Lee and other visitors were led all through the halls of Obion County Central, met with applause from students in the cafeteria as they passed by, and all the way over to the Career and Technical Education (CTE) wing. Obion County Central's CTE classes are meant to prepare students to begin applying skills learned immediately after graduation in the field of their choosing. OCCHS offers a wide variety of CTE classes, such as: Carpentry, Welding, Cosmetology, Shop, and more.

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Governor with OCCHS student.Lauren Kendall

The first stop in the CTE wing took place at the OCCHS Pet Grooming room. The class, taught by Sarah Frazier, gives students hands-on grooming and maintenance experience with different breeds and types of animals. As soon as Governor Lee was told about the class, his interest was immediately piqued. Governor Lee stated that his own son had recently began his own pet grooming business and he had only recently began to hear about traction the field was gaining.

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Governor, Watkins, and Leake discussing OCCHS Pet Grooming.Lauren Kendall

The second stop down the CTE hall was the Welding class, taught by Will Simmons. Students are taught a wide-range of welding skills and are given opportunities to use the skills that they have learned to help repair broken objects from different schools. When the Governor walked into the room, their were students in the corner working to repair a broken leg on a desk belonging to the high school.

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Governor with Will Simmons.Lauren Kendall

The last stop of the trip was the Automotive Shop, taught by Anthony Miller. The class, while empty upon the visit, was filled with remainders of broken down, hard work. Sat directly within the shop was a broke down race truck with parts of the engine sitting in pieces on the work bench. Automotive classes allow students to graduate high school with the knowledge basic and advanced automotive skills. The class also performs some regular maintenance and repair to vehicles belonging to staff of the high school.

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Governor speaking with Anthony Miller.Lauren Kendall

The Governor ended his visit at the front of the school addressing the staff of Obion County Schools that were in attendance. Governor Lee stated how proud he was of the school for "offering classes that were as diverse as the needs of its students," and that is was apparent that the school was making sure that the differing educational needs of its students were being met.

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Governor with administrators, staff, and students of OCCHS.Lauren Kendall

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Communications Director for the Obion County School District. University of Memphis Graduate

Obion County, TN
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