Four inner city Detroit area public high schools have partnered with more than 20 companies (including Walmart, McDonalds, Marriott and AutoZone) to teach teens job-readiness training during the school day -- for class credit, reports the Detroit Free Press.
The pilot program includes 11 weeks of entry-level job training during the school day for 10 credit hours and then, according to project manager John Cromer, students are then "placed in a job, a paid or unpaid internship, or a community service position with one of the companies."
One local activist group is less than thrilled with the program, however, saying it teaches students to be "subservient workers."
momlogic spoke with Walmart Divisional Director for Community & Media Relations
William C. Wertz who explained, "Walmart and other companies and really trying to give kids better advice about how to fill out job applications and how to better represent themselves in the most positive way -- when they go out and get jobs." He continues to say there is "no guarantee on our part to employee these students. We would consider and hope that we might find some good applicants, but it's not a low-paid apprenticeship or internship or anything like that."
As for training kids to be 'subservient workers,' Wertz pointed to the fact that many of Walmart's high-paid store managers started as cart pushers and were afforded the opportunity to work their way up through the ranks. "A lot of times work that some people think might not be the best is the first step on a ladder that leads quite far," he says.
What do you think? Do corporations have a place in our public schools? Should entry-level training be offered in school?