Torlakson impressed with TUHS career programs, Taft College's TIL and STEM classes.

California's State Superintendent of Schools visited two Taft campuses Friday morning and liked what he saw.

Tom Torlakson toured Taft High and Taft College as part of a two-day trip through Kern County.

His first stop was Taft Union High School and he left with admiration for the school's innovative Oil Technology Academy.

At Taft College, he was briefed on the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) program, visited an English class and then got a whirlwind tour of the new Transition to Independent Living Center.

He was accompanied y several administrators, including Superintend-President Dena Maloney, vice presidents Brock McMurray and Darcy Bogle, Taft College Foundation Executive Director Sheri Horn-Bunk and West Kern Community College Board members Billy White, Carolyn Hosking and Dawn Cole.

Before leaving, he presented the college with a certificate of recognition.

Torlakson is no stranger to programs for the developmentally disabled. He has taken part in the Best Buddies Ride, a fundraiser for programs for the developmentally disable.

"We need to find ways to replicate what we have here," he said in brief remarks as he left the TIL Center. "It's absolutely fantastic. It's real world skills."

He also liked Taft High's programs, especially the Oil Technology Academy.

"I'm very impressed with the career programs," he said.