Unexpectedly Jan Trost, the Mayor of Marbach, became quiz candidate yesterday in the afternoon. Dirk Zedler, director of Zedler Institut für Fahrradtechnik und –Sicherheit in Ludwigsburg and new education partner of the school wanted to know from the head of the city how many electric cars were registered in Germany and how many pedelecs were running on German roads. If it had been a real quizshow, Jan Trost would have had to leave the show. Under these circumstances however, it was a very informative afternoon for the head of the city and further guests at the workshop inauguration. Compared to hardly 6,000 registered cars, as reported by Dirk Zedler, 380,000 bicycles with electric motors have reportedly been sold in the past year. “More than one million are in use“, Zedler continues. According to him, the bicycle issue is awoken from its slumber.
The more valuable is the education partnership between the Ludwigsburg cycle specialist and the three Marbach schools Uhlandschule, Tobias-Mayer-Werkrealschule and Anne-Frank-Realschule (we reported on this subject). There was one point Dirk Zedler hat to put correctly in his address to the pupils. “We’ll not work on electric motors."
But besides that he pointed out that the bicycle topic was fascinating after all. First of all, three pupils will get to know the tools. They will learn how to replace an inner tube, how to adjust the gears or the brakes. In his short speech Dirk Zedler explained that they would service the school’s bicycle fleet. And all that in a workshop which was almost completely equipped by the Zedler company and which produces hardly any expenses for the school, as is underlined by the headmaster Bernd Schlegel.
The headmaster’s welcoming speech was full of superlatives. He pointed out that Dirk Zedler was not a, but the “bicycle guru”. The fact that he had come in touch at all with the company owner, today boss of 15 staff members, was due to good neighbourhood. “We thought what functions on a private level, functions as well here at school,” explains Schlegel.
The value of the education partnership was also pointed out by Claus Martin from the State Education Office. “If the education partnership will be continued, as it has begun, the outcome will be good,” he stated. All the more as Dirk Zedler is reportedly not only a competent, but also a socially committed partner. Zedler was the first company boss to offer a two-year apprenticeship to become a bicycle mechanic in 2004. His last apprentice had reportedly also come from a school for children with special needs.
If the next apprentice will be from Marbach, this will turn out to be a win-win-situation for all parties, stated Mayor Jan Trost.
Author and photo: Dominik Thewes