The Tehachapi Education Center, in partnership with Cerro Coso Community College, has launched a new welding class and opened a certified GED testing center.

School officials converted a storage room at Tehachapi High School with appropriate ventilation. They added 10 new welding machines, and hope for five more soon.

At the present time it is an adult school articulated class and the credits will be recognized by Cerro Coso if the student takes further classes or pursues a certificate in welding. 

“I’m so thrilled to see this program up and running. We have such a need in the community. Now we have a program and a teacher that will provide instruction on the industrial and artistic application of welding,” said Tehachapi Unified School District Superintendent Susan Andreas-Bervel.

More than 10 residents from the community and the school district celebrated and toured the room at THS on March 12, while waiting for students and the very first class to start.

“We are really happy that we are finally getting these programs up and running,” said Steve Bsharah, Tehachapi Education Center principal. He added, “We know there are people in the community that these programs will be valuable for and will help them advance their careers and make them more employable.”

More than 65 people are on the wait list. The beginning class can only hold 15 students at a time.

Administrators wanted the classes to be for high school students, too. But that hasn't happened yet; they first need to find a welding teacher who is certified to teach high school.

The first two classes in welding will be provided free of charge due to an Adult Education Block Grant, which is provided through state funding and only for adult education.

For more information, visit 126 S. Snyder Ave., or call 822-2124.

GED Testing Center

Adults who have always wanted to receive their high school diploma now have the opportunity to complete the GED test at the fully operational and certified testing center at Monroe High School. No longer do they need to leave Tehachapi.

It has taken more than a year to finish the testing center. Computers are ready, security areas set up and the school district is partnering with Pearson VUE to provide these services.

The high school also offers free GED preparation classes. When students are ready to take the test, it is estimated to cost more than $150. Residents who are interested in taking the GED test can sign up at gedtestingservice.com.