group of adults standing in front of seated students

A legislative team from Lansing recently visited the Allegan Area ESA to learn about Career and Technical Education (CTE) as well as special education services. Joining Superintendent William Brown on the tour were Rachelle Smit, 43rd District State Representative; Tim Martin, Legislative Director for Senator Thomas Albert; and David Renkiewicz, District Director for Republican Leader Matt Hall. 

The group started at the Tech Center in Allegan and viewed four of the 19 CTE programs offered in that building. The presentations from the program instructors focused on helping students become both career and college ready. Next, the group traveled to Otsego to visit the Transition Center. The center provides students aged 18-26 with services that support independent living and employability skills.   

The legislative team then returned to Allegan to walk through the Hillside Learning Center. This facility serves students with severe or multiple disabilities from pre-school through age 26. The group had an opportunity to meet with staff and students. After that it was back to the Tech Center for a lunch skillfully prepared by the Culinary Arts students. 

“This is a great opportunity for the legislators to see the value that intermediate school districts and education service agencies bring to the students of Michigan and specifically Allegan County,” said Superintendent Brown. “Without services like those provided by Allegan Area ESA, students’ educational opportunities would be greatly diminished.”

Pictured above at the Transition Center: (l-r) Rachelle Smit, Tim Martin, William Brown, Transition Center Principal Cheryl Borowski, Director of Specialized Instruction Rebecca Reed, and David Renkiewicz.