Tim Kaine invites Botetourt County educator as guest to State of the Union


tim kaine-newU.S. Senator Tim Kaine announced that his guest at Tuesday’s Presidential State of the Union Address will be Lisa Barnett, Coordinator for Career and Technical Education for Botetourt County Public Schools.

Kaine, co-chair of the bipartisan Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, has made improving CTE one of his top priorities in the Senate. Kaine grew up working in his father’s ironworking shop and spent a year as a missionary in Honduras where he worked as the principal of a school that taught welding and carpentry. After experiencing the power of technical education firsthand, governor kaine went on to spearhead the creation of Governor’s Career and Technical Academies in Virginia – now called the Governor’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Academies.

In the Senate, Kaine has introduced legislation to increase access to high-quality CTE programs and facilitate CTE career explorationprograms for middle school students.

“I’m thrilled Ms. Barnett will join me as my guest in Washington Tuesday,” said Kaine.Lisa Barnett and her colleagues in Botetourt County have worked hard to ensure students have access to skills training that will prepare them for good, high-paying jobs that often go unfilled because employers can’t find workers with the necessary technical training. Their work to make a high-quality CTE education accessible to students sets an impressive example for educators across the nation. I look forward to continuing my work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to strengthen career and technical education for students across Virginia and the U.S.”

“I am honored to represent Botetourt County at the State of the Union Address,” said Lisa Barnett.  “It’s exciting to be a part of the national discussion on the relevance of Career and Technical Education. Through project-based learning and real world application, students enrolled in CTE programs apply their academic knowledge and learn valuable soft skills that are vital to success in their future endeavors.”

Last year, Senator Kaine’s guest was Army Staff Sergeant Tammy Brown, a machinist and welder stationed at Fort Lee who served on active duty for more than 15 years, including tours in Kosovo and Iraq.



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