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CHS Automotive program recognized by MDE


Charlie Melton


Clinton Public School District

Dr. Tim Martin, Superintendent

(601) 924-7533

Media contact: Sandi Beason, APR


CLINTON — Clinton High School’s automotive technology program is one of several statewide highlighted by the Mississippi Department of Education.

Mississippi is one of only 17 states that require high school automotive technology programs to be accredited by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation, or NATEF. This organization oversees the accreditation process, which includes an extensive evaluation of each program’s facilities, standards, instructors and administration.

“We have been NATEF certified for 15 years,” said Charlie Melton, instructor at the CHS Career Complex. “Our automotive program has always been at the top of other schools in Mississippi. The level of instruction the students get in Clinton is some of the best in the state.”

The MDE today issued a press release highlighting expansions among nationally accredited automotive programs, and listed Clinton as one of 41 high schools statewide with this accreditation.

“The automotive technology field has become increasingly complex over the past decade, and high school programs have had to develop their staff, equipment and curriculum in order to teach the advanced technologies this profession requires,” said Wendy Clemons, executive director of secondary education at the MDE.

Melton said some of his current and former students work at Empire Trucks, Gray Daniels in Jackson and Brandon, the Mercedes and BMW dealerships in Jackson, and Honda in Jackson.

“This does not include the ones working in other states in the field, or who are attending automotive schools,” he said.

Clemons said automotive industry contacts report that nationally certified programs “will better train students for the automotive industry and make the industries more willing to invest in the certified programs.”

“These investments can range from more training for instructors to equipment donations for the automotive technology labs,” she said.