Where Have All The Shop Teachers Gone?

In 1978, Proposition 13 was passed.  This legislation along with other events began to dramatically impact school budgeting for elective programs.

During the early 1980s college graduates with Industrial Arts degrees wanting to teach had difficulty finding teaching jobs.  By the early 1990s all the CSU Industrial Arts programs had shuttered, due to lack of college student interest.

Around the same time the UC system began its push for high school classes to be UC approved.  Remember, the UC system does not embrace 'applied skills' or manual arts, rather their focus in on 'The Theory'.

In the early 2000s the term STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) began to take hold in the educational community. So far, it doesn't appear that the concept of STEM education has done much to rebuild Industrial Arts education. One example: the Los Angeles Unified School District moved to close all shop classes by 2013.  

Today, as shop teachers retire, the replacement pipeline is dry.  Regardless of the amount of Federal and State money poured into shop programs, without qualified teachers, doors will close, students will not have the opportunity to explore industrial related careers and we will continue to slip behind other nations. There are no budding teachers being trained and prepared.  Soon we will have only empty seats where future shop teachers used to sit.  A solution needs to be developed.  What's your idea to solve this pressing issue?