Community Colleges Trying to Recruit and Retain Teachers
Community colleges are answering a statewide teacher shortage with an effort to recruit, prepare and retain teachers.
In response to the shortage, the Maricopa Community College District has formed the Teacher Education Partnership Commission — composed of 32 education, government and business leaders.
“The ultimate goal is to elevate the profession so more people feel good about it and are attracted to it,” says Dr. Anna Solley, the district’s vice chancellor of academic affairs and student development.
At an average age of 44, many teachers are expected to retire over the next 20 years. Over the same period, elementary and secondary school enrollment will rise 66 percent.
Commission member Barbara Clark, workforce and education development manager with Motorola, says data indicates that about 6 percent of the nation’s teaching force leaves the profession annually.
“Getting students to enroll in teacher education courses is one thing; keeping them in the profession and we need to help those entering the profession by providing them with some sort of a mechanism to help them develop greater confidence and be more self-assured in their profession.’
Solley wants to create more programs like 2+2+2, which links teacher recruitment and education programs in the high schools, community colleges and universities.
The commission will hold a forum in February for business and education leaders to brainstorm ideas.
The Maricopa County Community College District is composed of 10 community colleges, several satellite campuses, skill centers and business/industry, technical and customized training institutes.
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