Date: 02/18/2009

Teacher Cadet Program


Votes: View--> Action Taken:

07:37 AM -- Teacher Cadet Program

Sheryl Mitchell, representing the Colorado Teacher Cadet Program, shared the mission of the organization and a packet of information with the committee (Attachment A). She also discussed the historical background of the teacher cadet program, which was founded in South Carolina. She explained it is a year-long, honors elective course with college-level material, and students must meet certain enrollment criteria in order to be eligible for the program.


07:41 AM

Ms. Mitchell noted that the required elements of the program are: an application process, statewide syllabus, prescribed curriculum, required artifacts, portfolio, and certificates of field experience hours and portfolio credit recommendation. She also reviewed the teacher cadet course content, which is broken out into themes: experiencing learning, experiencing the profession, and experiencing the classroom. Ms. Mitchell explained the Colorado implementation of the teacher cadet program, and the supports given to the teachers who are chosen to teach the program. She noted that over 1,200 students have taken the Teacher Cadet class as of May 2008, and that 37 programs are operated in 21 school districts.

07:48 AM

Ms. Mitchell stated that she is trying to expand the program beyond the Front Range, and is working with rural schools to provide distance learning. She shared that the curriculum aligns with the Colorado Teacher Licensure Standards, and the program has articulation agreements with the University of Northern Colorado, Colorado State University, University of Colorado - Denver, University of Colorado - Colorado Springs, and the Colorado Community College System. Representative Merrifield asked if there is a way to standardize the articulation agreements. Ms. Mitchell replied that it is a challenge because of the variety of education programs offered at the higher education level.

07:53 AM

Ms. Mitchell noted that it is also difficult to find the right person at the university with whom to discuss the program. Representative Todd asked if Ms. Mitchell has spoken with Director Skaggs of the Department of Higher Education. Ms. Mitchell replied that she had not spoken with him directly, but that she is a member of the P-20 Council. Ms. Mitchell further explained that she says there is room for improvement in streamlining the process. Representative Todd asked if this program has been discussed in P-20 Council. Ms. Mitchell replied that other issues have been the focus, such as teacher certification and alternative certification, but she hopes that this year there will be more discussion on the teacher cadet program.

07:56 AM

Senator King mentioned that he is working on a guaranteed transfer pathways bill that may address some of the concerns Ms. Mitchell presented. Senator King explained that the bill creates five pathways, two of which are focused on education. Ms. Mitchell said that the local schools or counselors do not know how to access information once the legislation is passed. Ms. Mitchell continued her presentation by discussing the program benefits to students. She also shared her vision for the future of the program and the future needs for the program's viability. She explained that her work is completely grant-funded, and that the program would be a good fit with the teacher licensure division at the Department of Education.

08:00 AM

Representative Merrifield asked what is grant-funded. Ms. Mitchell explained that her position is grant-funded, and that she manages the administration of the program. Representative Merrifield asked if teachers who teach the course receive a stipend. Ms. Mitchell explained that there is CTE funding for teacher training and coursework. Representative Merrifield asked about how students are recruited into the program. Ms. Mitchell explained that it is hard to do on a limited budget. Senator Romer asked if the program has a connection with Teach for America (TFA). Ms. Mitchell explained that TFA is a college program, and that the teacher cadet program is a high school program.

08:04 AM

Representative Todd asked how she could find out where the programs are being offered. Ms. Mitchell explained that the website has the listing of high schools offering the program. Representative Solano asked if the teachers are compensated or credit. Ms. Mitchell explained that the teachers can receive graduate credit or certification credit. With that, the presentation on the teacher cadet program concluded.