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California Extends Teacher-Prep Programs
posted by: Ruthie | September 09, 2013, 05:23 PM   

Since the National Council on Teacher Quality’s (NCTQ) recent report on teacher-preparation, the subject of new teacher requirements has been a hot topic. Recently, California signed a bill granting more flexibility to teacher preparation programs.

Previously, California eliminated education undergrad degrees as a requirement for teachers and restricted teacher-preparation coursework to a year. Due to this policy, most California teachers hold a bachelor’s degree in a content field, and then complete a year of post-baccalaureate programs which teach basic pedagogical skills.

However, based on criticism that the current program didn’t give enough time to cover state requirements, the new law permits education programs to offer up to two years of formal preparation. In addition to a degree, teachers would ideally be given more time to learn effective teaching techniques.

“This is part of an attempt to allow more flexibility in when and how people get trained,” said Linda Darling-Hammond, the chairwoman of the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. “If they want to begin in undergraduate, we hope to open that up to them.”

Teacher preparation programs in California are welcoming this new law. The preference among students is already in favor of longer, more advanced preparation programs. “We counseled students because we wanted them to have the additional time to engage in the learning,” said Heather Lattimer from the University of San Diego.

As the teaching profession continues to evolve, teacher preparation programs will continue to adapt. Based on data from experts and AAE Membership surveys, we must work with policymakers and universities to ensure teachers are better prepared for classrooms.

What do you think about extended teacher preparation programs?
Comment below.

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