State of the States

West Virginia

State's First Lady Gets Education Role

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Gov. Joe Manchin III advocated the right of every child to leave school with a marketable skill, and gave his wife a special assignment, during his Feb. 9 State of the State Address.

The governor said that his wife, Gayle Manchin, would lead an endeavor to improve distance education in the state.

“With the technology available today, there is no reason why a student in Welch shouldn’t have the exact same access to specialized-class choices as a student from Wheeling or vice versa,” he said. “It is yet another way for us to protect our small, rural, community-based schools, while also ensuring that our children have access to the latest and greatest curriculum.”

He made other general comments about schools, but did not lay out details of new plans.

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Read the text of Gov. Joe Manchin's address.

“There will never be another meeting under my watch without education and economic development working together,” said Mr. Manchin, a Democrat.

“We need to do a much better job of educating our children about their career choices. As I’ve said many times, while every child needs some form of post-secondary education, not every child is meant to receive a four-year college degree. In fact, the demand for skilled blue-collar workers is now steadily on the rise,” the first-term governor continued.

Some students would be better served with a community-college degree or technical training, and Gov. Manchin said those options should be given equal consideration with four-year colleges and universities.

Vol. 24, Issue 23, Page 31

Published in Print: February 16, 2005, as West Virginia

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