The Muscle Shoals City Board of Education, Colbert County Board of Education, Sheffield City Board of Education, and Tuscumbia City Board of Education entered into a cooperative agreement to build the Muscle Shoals Area Vocational School on December 20, 1994. The fiscal plant was designated to be constructed on the property owned by the Muscle Shoals Board and Education and general operation/supervision of the school invested in the Muscle Shoals Board of Education and the Superintendent.
On September 29, 1976, The Muscle Shoals City Board of Education applied to the Alabama State Board of Education for approval to operate a vocational school in Colbert County effective July 1, 1977. The Alabama State Board of Education approved the request on August 10, 1977.
Construction funds were procured through an Appalachian Region Construction Grant, $500,000.00 that was submitted by the North Alabama Council of Local Governments to the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs. The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs submitted the construction grant to Governor George Wallace who forwarded it to the Appalachian Regional Commission, Washington D.C.
The Muscle Shoals City School System was awarded a $500,000.00 Appalachian Region Construction grant on May 13, 1975. The Muscle Shoals Board of Education contributed $359,545.28 of local support to construct the school. Total cost of the Muscle Shoals Area Vocational Center was $859,545.28.
In 1975, The Muscle Shoals Board of Education conducted a needs assessment in conjunction with the Alabama State Department of Education to determine the business and industry employment needs in the Shoals area. As a result of the needs assessment survey the following occupational programs were initially implemented at the vocational school: Auto Body, Auto Mechanics, Business and Office Education, Carpentry, Distributive Education, Health Occupations, Horticulture, Industrial Electricity, Radio and TV repair, Trowel Trades, Welding
The Muscle Shoals Board of Education expended $212,375.56 to acquire equipment to implement the vocational programs indicated above.
Since the original opening of the school in 1977, Cosmetology, Engineering Graphics, Electronics/Robotics, Principles of Technology, Technology Education, Family and Consumer Science, and Cisco Academy programs were approved by the Alabama Department of Education and implemented at the Muscle Shoals Area Vocational School. Due to economic shifts in the local economy Trowel Trades and Horticulture were eliminated from our vocational curriculum. The Industrial Electricity program was eliminated due to low student enrollment.
The Muscle Shoals School System implemented Principles of Technology into the curriculum in 1986 and Applied Math in 1988 as a local initiative effort utilizing local funds. Technical Communications was infused into the English curriculum for grades nine through twelve on August 20, 1991. The Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Act of 1990 provided funding for the implementation of Technical Communications at Muscle Shoals High School.
Student enrollment the first year of operations at the Muscle Shoals Center for Technology was 168. In 1989 the student enrollment grew to 237. The 1991-92 school year had a enrollment of 329. The 2010-2011 year has an enrollment of 690 students.
The student body in 1977 was male with no program or facility design or intention to recruit female students. The facility initially housed only male bathrooms. With the implementation of Cosmetology, Cooperative Education, and the Principles of Technology one female bathroom was built on the Muscle Shoals Center for Technology's campus. There is a need for additional female bathrooms. The Board of Education has recently purchased property near the Muscle Shoals High School with plans to build a new Career and Technical facility that will accommodate both male and female students.
In 2000, the faculty and staff requested a school name change to reflect the curriculum changes that represented the technology and computer skills required for today's labor force. In October 2000, the name of the Muscle Shoals Area Vocational School changed to the Muscle Shoals Center for Technology.
An appraisal from RISK Management values the building on the school site to be $4,954,870.00.
The Muscle Shoals Center for Technology continues to update our technological capabilities, as well as updating our hands-on skills equipment. Physical plant issues are on-going, and continue to be addressed. Many activities are planned throughout the school year to enhance our student's employability, including Leadership Conferences, State Skills Competitions, Interviewing skills, etc. We continue to update our curriculum and course offerings to our students. We continue to believe that we offer ‘cutting edge' educational opportunities for our students.
Beliefs and Mission
The Muscle Shoals Center for Technology's faculty envisions the active participation of each student in the teaching-learning process. We believe that the 21st Century offers many opportunities and challenges for students in their quest to become productive citizens in an ever-changing world of global economics and political ideology. As caretakers of tomorrow's humanity, it is our obligation to provide an environment conducive to learning; that all children may grow in prosperity and develop a love of Country thus providing a better community, state, nation and world for all mankind.
As the vision statement above indicates the faculty and administration believes that career and technical education contributes significantly to the educational development of students into productive citizens. We strive to provide all students with an instructional program that is student centered, technically innovative, and industry based. In addition, continued emphasis on best educational practices is an essential component of our ongoing school improvement process. Approximately sixty percent of our faculty holds advanced practice degrees, and we vigilantly search for the most current educational practices and optimal organizational conditions. Our school administration and faculty desires to deliver ‘cutting-edge' instruction in each career and technical arena. The instructional process is based upon the premise that all students will:
Ø Acquire career and technical skills and a broad base of related knowledge in a particular occupational area or occupational cluster.
Ø Develop pride in work and appreciation of good craftsmanship and service.
Ø Construct good occupational work and safety habits.
Ø Acquire leadership qualities through laboratory/shop and student career and technical student organizations.
Ø Develop increased self-confidence in himself/herself and his/her abilities.
Ø Develop interpersonal relationship skills required in the world of work.
Community and School Relations
Muscle Shoals Center for Technology maintains effective communications and relationships with stakeholders in a number of ways. Morning and afternoon announcements are accessible to faculty, staff, and students on the school website which is published by students at the end of first period daily. Announcements are also emailed to every faculty member every day.
The school website advises the community of scheduled school events and other important school news. Our faculty maintains individual web pages to facilitate teacher, parent, and student communication. Teachers post syllabi, assignments, notes, and other materials related to classroom lessons. Students and parents can also email teachers from the school's website.
We offer the opportunity for parents and students to discuss with teachers information on their classes and expectations for student achievement. Parent/teacher conference days are scheduled as needed to give parents, teachers, and students a chance to stay informed on any issues concerning student progress.
Parents and students can access important information about their children directly from their computer, anytime, anywhere through STI Home. The information that can be accessed includes lesson plans, assignments, grades, class schedules, attendance records, discipline reports, activity announcements, and homework assignments.
Our faculty maintains community relations through advisory committees. Advisory committees meet a minimum of once each semester to discuss individual programs. Each program seeks advice from their committee members on how to improve the program for the students.