BILLERICA -- Treasurer and candidate for governor Steve Grossman unveiled his plan to boost funding for vocational schools during a visit with area superintendents at Shawsheen Valley Technical High School on Tuesday.

The Democratic candidate's proposal calls for investments in vocational-technical education and new public-private partnerships for more internship opportunities, which would help close the skills gap between schools and the job market, he said.

"I'm a big believer in no limits," Grossman said. "We need to keep our kids here in Massachusetts, and this plan will go a long way to keeping them here through job creation."

At Shawsheen on Tuesday, Grossman emphasized modernizing vocational-technical schools by increasing state technology grants and incentivizing the private sector to match public funds at a high rate. He also pledged to continue working in close coordination with the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) to repair or rebuild vocational-technical schools and bring high-quality programs for youth and adults.

In addition, Grossman called for organizing a task force that brings together leaders from public colleges, universities and the business community to create a program that increases the number of internship and co-op opportunities in public higher education.

Area superintendents who attended Tuesday's discussion included Shawsheen's Charles Lyons, Greater Lowell Tech's Roger Bourgeois and Nashoba Valley Tech's Judith Klimkiewicz.

For more on this story, read Wednesday's edition of The Sun and visit www.lowellsun.com.

Follow Rick Sobey on Twitter and Tout @rsobeyLSun.