California Educator

December/January 2022

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Teacher Residency Grant Program This program offers candidates the opportunity to participate in yearlong residencies, learn from a mentor teacher, and earn up to $25,000 to cover their program costs. Residents apprentice alongside an expert teacher in a high- needs classroom for a full academic year. They take closely linked coursework from a partnering university that leads to a credential and a master 's degree at the end of the residency year. They receive living stipends and tuition support. In exchange, they commit to teaching in the district for three to five years beyond the residency. This model fosters tight part- nerships between local school districts and teacher preparation programs. Residencies recruit teachers to meet district needs, usually in shortage fields, and rigorously prepare them and keep them in the district. For details, visit the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. National Board Certification Incentive Grant Why should I apply? Board Certified teachers are more likely to stay in the profession and have a higher impact on student performance. Teachers who initiate the certification process are eligible for a $2500 grant and will receive a $5000 annual stipend during their five-year commitment. If you hold a BA, have completed three years of teaching or counseling, and have a valid state teaching or counseling license, then YES! Is this program for me? What is my commitment? Eligible teachers have three years to complete National Board Assessments. After board certification, teachers commit to teach in high-need schools for five years. Where can I learn more? Check the NBPTS website for information about the candidate certification process. Check the California Department of Education to see if your district has a local support group. National Board Certification Incentive Grant This program offers eligible teachers $2,500 to initiate the highly regarded National Board Certification process for teaching excellence, and a $5,000 annual stipend for each year of their five-year commitment to teach in high-priority schools. 2 4 Research from the Learning Policy Institute (LPI) shows that increasing teacher diversity has many positive academic and social-emotional benefits for students of color. Out- comes include increased reading and math scores, improved graduation rates, and less chronic absenteeism. According to LPI, " Teacher diversity may also benefit teachers of color who experience feelings of isolation, frustration and fatigue when there are few other teachers of color in their schools. Increasing teacher diversity may improve satisfaction for teachers of color and decrease turnover, a key contributor to teacher shortages and school instability." However, teachers of color face several systemic barriers to recruitment and retention that have been exacerbated by the pandemic, including insufficient access to funding to pay for tuition and housing while earning their credentials, lack of adequate preparation and mentoring, and disparate pass rates of licensure exams. This is even more troubling since research shows that underprepared and undersupported teachers leave the profession at a rate that is two to three times higher than fully prepared and supported teachers. Fortunately, this year 's state budget could prove to be a game-changer for teacher candidates, as it offers them coursework alternatives to standardized basic skills, sub- ject-matter competency and reading instruction tests. (The nonprofit Public Advocates has been pushing for decades for such reasonable alternatives to what can often be racially and culturally biased standardized teacher tests.) Investments in residencies and other sustainable and high-retention pathways such as those made this year can also mitigate barriers to access and pave the way for the strong, diverse and stable workforce that California needs. High-quality teacher residencies can prepare effective teach- ers who stay in the profession, helping to reduce high rates of teacher turnover and end the revolving door of educators in the highest-need schools. In addition, residencies, when adequately funded, often provide financially feasible path- ways for candidates and are more likely to recruit teachers of color than other pathways into teaching. 47 D E C E M B E R 2 0 21 / J A N U A R Y 2 0 2 2

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