August 18, 2022 Updated 8:57 A.M. ET
WASHINGTON (FLV) – The Biden Administration’s U.S. Education Secretary, Miguel Cardona, praised Florida’s plan to encourage veterans to work in the classrooms.
Cardona was asked in a CNN interview about the Florida law which allows qualified veterans who served four years in the military, have 60 college credits, and passed a subject area examination to receive a five year temporary teaching certificate.
BRIANNA KEILAR: “Is that insufficient? Or do you think this is a creative look and worth a look?”
SECRETARY CARDONA: “I don’t have the details of the Florida program specifically. I love anything that’s going to provide opportunities for those who are looking into the teaching profession, ensuring that they’re connected to good teacher preparation programs that teach pedagogy and ensuring that the educators have the skills needed to meet the needs of our students.”
Cardona added that getting teachers into the classroom is step one and keeping them there is step two.
States across the country are facing severe teacher shortages. Florida lawmakers passed the veteran teaching legislation last session.
On Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis proposed other initiatives for lawmakers to consider that would help recruit more people into the teaching profession.
The first initiative includes recruiting first responders who have their bachelor’s degree. DeSantis said the state would waive the state teacher certification exam fees and those first responders would be eligible for a $4,000 bonus under the program. That bonus would jump to $5,000 if they teach courses that have acute shortages.
The second Initiative creates a teacher apprenticeship program which will allow Floridians with their associates degree to get professional experience teaching in a classroom under the mentorship of an experienced teacher. The apprentice will spend two years teaching under the leadership of another teacher. The teacher mentor will receive a $4,000 bonus for every person they mentor.
The third proposal includes a scholarship program to help current high school teachers earn their masters degree. It will allow them to teach dual enrollment classes at the high school where they currently work.
Dual enrollment allows students to gain college credit in high school and save some money. Students typically will travel between the high school campus and the college campus.
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