This September, Prepared To Teach received a two-year grant to apply and expand on the lessons learned during a previous 2018-20 grant term, which focused on documenting how teacher education institutions are working to redesign their preparation programs in partnership with districts to identify sustainable funding streams for paid teacher residencies.
Funding from Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) has enabled Prepared To Teach to establish partnerships in six states across the country, to date. As part of this work, universities and local school districts work together to reimagine existing school and district budgets to fund high-quality preparation, including candidate stipends. As universities and districts develop residency structures, Prepared To Teach facilitates cross-site conversations, provides sustainable financial models, and documents their process to help inform other programs looking to make a similar shift to sustainable candidate funding.
“Each partnership has made incredible contributions to our understanding of how locally built residency models can achieve financial sustainability. We’re looking forward to learning more from this diverse group of partnerships by establishing residency-focused Communities of Practice for administrators, teachers, and faculty who are responsible for these innovative residency models,” said Karen DeMoss, Executive Director, Prepared To Teach.
Paid teacher residencies are essential in helping to address issues of quality, equity, and access in the education system. Residencies offer aspiring teachers the opportunity to be paid to co-teach with a mentor teacher for an entire year before taking charge of their own classrooms, providing them with the support they need to focus on learning to teach. Paid residencies are particularly important for attracting, preparing, and retaining teachers from under-represented backgrounds, a key goal of the partnerships in the network.
Partnerships in the Prepared To Teach network are located in California, Colorado, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, South Dakota, and Washington. The newly formed Communities of Practice will help deepen learning in every area of residency development by engaging a breadth of stakeholders, as well as support the sharing of lessons and successes across partnership sites.
“Prepared To Teach believes that sustainably funded teacher residencies can transform education systems by creating more equitable access to the profession and more high-quality, well-prepared teachers who stay in the profession longer and strengthen schools over time. We are grateful to MACP for the opportunity to continue working with our program partners in their efforts to expand access to teacher residency programs,” said Divya Mansukhani, Director of Partnership Learning, Prepared To Teach.