• Joanne Jacobs

Arizona: You can start teaching before you earn a degree

Arizona teachers won't need a bachelor's degree to launch their careers under a new law signed by Gov. Doug Ducey, reports Fox's Stephen Sorace. Novice teachers must be enrolled in college.


Public schools in the state have struggled to fill teaching vacancies for years, he writes. One survey found 26 percent of jobs are not filled by a certified teacher.


Would 19-year-olds be learning to teach on the job? I suspect districts that use the flexibility will be hiring aides as classroom teachers while they move toward a bachelor's degree. Many districts have programs to help aides, who tend to be "diverse," become teachers, but it takes a long time for someone working full-time to complete college.


Some Arizona districts are experimenting with team teaching. Arizona State's Next Education Workforce initiative is working with schools to create teaching teams that combine veterans and novices.


“We've created the need to have one person in a box with a group of students every single day," ASU's Brent Maddin told Rocio Hernandez of KJZZ. "I'm not convinced that it’s a) job that is sustainable for educators, or b) really good at delivering the truly deep and personalized learning that our students, especially our students with the greatest needs deserve.”


In Public Impact's Opportunity Culture model, which is used nationwide, master teachers lead multi-classroom teams, "extending the reach of excellent teachers." There's lots of opportunity for coaching, collaboration and shared lesson planning.




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