Five years ago, automotive teacher Brian Locke embarked on a long process to have the Automotive Program at Coconino High School certified by the National Automotive Technician Education Foundation.
The NATEF was founded in 1983 by Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) to certify automotive education programs and help promote technician training.
To receive this certification, Mr. Locke applied and met the following criteria:
-Curriculum must meet all the standards per NATEF
– Curriculum must be taught with enough seat time to meet the standards.
-Must have meetings two times a year with and advisory committee made up of industry people, former students and parents.
-Tool and equipment inventory.
-Floor plan of the shop and class room.
– Student population
– How fees are collected.
– What student services are provided?
-The teacher must have a Teacher Certification, plus 20 hours a year of industry update training and receive at least four ASE Certifications.
A representative from NATEF visited Mr. Locke’s class to review all of the above requirements. During this time three industry professionals were needed to help evaluate the criteria listed above. The representative also called at least six employers of students that have been in the program within the last three years to make sure they left the program with the knowledge they needed to enter the work force.
Coconino High School is one of seven schools in Arizona to hold this honor.
With this certification the students in Mr. Locke’s class will leave high school with an industry standard certification and will be on par with having some technical school training which translates for them, not starting at the bottom if they choose automotive technician as a career. These programs meet industry-developed standards that result in students ready to enter the workforce or to continue their education.
Mr. Locke said he feels that this “takes the Flagstaff Unified School District/Coconino High School program to the next level on a national and global stage. It has been a long and challenging process, but worth it!”