Sustainable Funding Project Launches Report Advocating Co-Teaching Residencies

As expectations for students and teachers continue to rise, there is growing urgency surrounding the issue of teacher preparation for the 21st century. To help create pathways toward the sustainable funding of high-quality preparation nationwide, Bank Street’s Sustainable Funding Project released its first report today titled “For the Public Good: Quality Preparation for Every Teacher.”

The report asserts that all aspiring teachers should have access to yearlong co-teaching experiences, commonly referred to as “residencies,” in classroom settings with experienced teacher mentors prior to certification. The report also identifies public funding streams to support residency programs nationwide and outlines how teacher preparation providers and school districts can establish mutually-beneficial partnerships to support high-quality teacher preparation and incentivize positive change across the entire educational ecosystem.

“To achieve our national goal of providing a quality education for every child, we must recognize the link between quality teacher preparation and the public interest and support teacher residencies as the required norm,” said Karen DeMoss, Director of the Sustainable Funding Project. “Just like doctors in training, aspiring teachers need sustained clinical experiences alongside expert practitioners to build links between educational theory and practice so they are ready for the rigors of the job on day one.”

Research shows that when teachers are not well prepared, school culture and student achievement suffer, and districts are burdened by costs in the billions attributed to the high attrition rates associated with underprepared teachers. Drawing from case studies, large scale-empirical data, and theoretical models from around the world, the authors demonstrate how paid residencies can address a range of persistent challenges facing schools and districts across the country, including: attracting a diverse group of promising candidates into the profession; ensuring all teachers have the skills they need to promote student growth and learning; retaining effective teachers, especially in schools serving low-income and diverse families; creating a teacher development continuum with meaningful leadership and learning opportunities for all teachers; and enhancing broader school improvement.

“For the Public Good: Quality Teacher Preparation for Every Teacher” outlines examples and benefits of strong residency models within the U.S and abroad and explores how districts and preparation providers nationwide could support funding for a significant number of residencies by reallocating existing resources. The report offers an effective vision for contemporary teacher preparation and will serve as a resource to support partnerships between districts and preparation providers, both of whom stand to benefit from deeper pre-service classroom experiences for aspiring teachers. Click here to read the full report.

For more information on working with the Sustainable Funding Project, please contact Karen DeMoss at kdemoss@bankstreet.edu.