LINCOLN, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Teaching positions in industrial arts and home economics are currently some of the hardest to fill, mainly because the certification programs no longer exist in Maine and many other states.
In order to become an industrial arts teacher you must have a 700 certification -- something that hasn't been offered at Maine universities for almost a decade. The University of Maine at Farmington was one of the only colleges that offered a home economics teaching major -- that hasn't existed since the 1980's. This is concerning for those teachers that are soon to retire, especially when there is talk of creating legislation that would require these two subjects for graduation.
"There's no pool of teachers out there any longer" Henry Pietras said. Pietras is the principal and former shop teacher at Mattawancook Academy. "Making that a requirement for students to have in school is a noble idea, a great idea, and I'm all supportive of it, but I think its maybe a little cart before the horse on this one".
Cost is also a concern surrounding LD 412, the bill that proposes home ec and shop classes being a graduation requirement for Maine students. Many schools have gotten rid of their workspace and equipment. Bringing those resources back would be a financial burden to the schools and Maine taxpayers. Pietras feels there is a way to incorporate those basic skills back into their curriculum, they just need to get creative.