Fowler digs being asked to join agriculture task force
Longtime agriculture proponent Sen. Dale Fowler (R-Harrisburg) has been tasked with growing some teachers in the depleted field, according to Fowler's website.
“I want to thank Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady for appointing me to this task force so we can get to the root of the problem,” Fowler said about being named to the Senate's Agriculture Education Shortage Task Force. “I look forward to digging further into this issue to ensure that agriculture education in Illinois continues to be available to future generations.”
Senate Bill 1991 created the task force whose members are expected to gather results on the decline of agricultural education in their communities and think of ways to resolve issues, including funding to recruit more agriculture education teachers, according to the Illinois State Board of Education website.
“In 2016, high schools in Illinois had 85 openings for agriculture teachers, but universities in Illinois graduated only 21 agriculture education majors,” Fowler said in the press release. “Of those, only 14 went on to teach. Agriculture is a vital industry in Illinois. We have to do what we can to encourage students to go into this field.”
The task force must report its findings to the General Assembly by Jan. 1, 2019. It is made up of legislators, current agriculture educators and other agricultural stakeholders.