Published: Oct 05, 2011 5:54 PM EDT
Updated: Oct 05, 2011 10:07 PM EDT

LEE COUNTY, Fla.- The future of education has been the talk all day at a special community summit in Southwest Florida. Business, education and political leaders from across the state are coming together to talk about what students need to work on to succeed outside of the classroom.

The issue of jobs and education front and center. Summit leaders want to bridge the gap between what is being taught in the classroom and what employers are looking for in workers.

The summit's importance was underscored by its key-note speaker. Despite slashing education and per-student spending Governor Rick Scott joined a group of more than 500 education, business and political leaders to talk about the important role students will have in growing a future economy.

WINK's own Lois Thome moderated a panel of local college presidents and superintendents.

The summits goal: to get business and education leaders on the same page when it comes to new industries and the need for smarter workers. It's a relationship Governor Scott says is needed at time where budgets are tight and the competition for jobs is fierce.

"Everybody needs to get the best education possible. And focus in areas where they know there will be jobs and think about where our economy is going. Math is going to be very important to you. Your writing skills. Engineering and science. Those are going to be the key to the future," Governor Scott said.      

Heavy hitters in the business world in attendance included the leaders of Naples-based Arthrex and Lee Memorial Health Systems. They met with the superintendents of Lee, Charlotte and Collier counties.