School districts partner to create first of its kind trade schoo - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

School districts partner to create first of its kind trade school

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The Peyton and Widefield school districts are coming together to create a national training center for manufacturing skills. Peyton has top of the line woodworking equipment, Widefield used to have a construction course. Both have pin pointed trade work as a way to send students into today's workforce. The idea for a national training center was started by an award winning teacher, who's ready to see 3 years of hard work come to fruition.

Tim Kistler, the superintendent for Peyton School District 23 J-T, tells News 5 he recruited Dean Mattson, a 2013 national award winning teacher, to bring a national training center to Colorado. With it...wood manufacturing for local students, fully equipped by donations from manufacturing companies

"My objective was to bring our program into this abandoned school so that it could expand throughout the nation," said Mattson, Director of woods manufacturing for Peyton.

Peyton turned an unused school into a skilled trade center for students last year. they held an open house to show off its current programs, which caught the Widefield School District's attention. "I was really impressed by the program," said Scott Campbell, the Superintendent for Widefield School District, "the quality of the program, the machinery the kids were using. So I talked to Tim and said look we need to some how partner up."

"We're over 50 miles apart but yet we're joining together on a adventure to help students," said Kistler the Superintendent for Peyton School District.

They found a building near Schriever Air Force Base on Foreign Trade Zone Boulevard. 

Widefield paid for the building and Peyton will make payments until it's a 50/50 partnership."A unique partnership between schools and a unique partnership between manufacturers and school districts that i just don't think is out there anywhere," said Kistler.

The donated equipment will be replaced when newer models come out, at no cost to the schools.

Doors are set to open in August of 2017. "If it can happen in Peyton, believe me it can happen anywhere else," said Mattson.

The new facility will start with woodworking, and possibly expand to construction, metal work and automotive. The manufacturing companies will send people to be trained on its equipment, veterans can take classes and others looking to learn a new trade skill. So it will mostly help high school students, but is aiming to help the manufacturing industry as a whole.

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