||February 25, 2014
|| David Mance, Media Relations Coordinator, 509-969-6084 or firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Unique Team-Based Teacher Training Program Expanding to the Tri-Cities
Toppenish, WA — One of the most innovative teacher preparation programs in the entire country is expanding into the Tri-Cities area. HU105, a joint project between Heritage University and Educational Service District (ESD) 105 in Yakima, trains students to become teachers by placing them directly into elementary and middle school classrooms.
The candidates work in teams of three and are supervised by a certified, or “core” teacher. By the time they graduate, the candidates already have a year and a half to two years of experience teaching students. The benefits of HU105 to children in these classrooms include: greater attention from the teacher; and more individualized study, and quicker response from teachers to their academic needs.
“In the classrooms that house HU105 teacher candidates, we have seen improvements in attendance, and learning outcomes of the students,” says Mark Cheney, HU105 Project Co-Director at ESD 105.
Teachers involved with HU105 say there’s strength in numbers when it comes to classroom instruction. “I am able to reach more students, with four adults in the classroom everything we do is more focused and productive,” says Gloribel Andrade, a 1st Grade Core Teacher with Smith Elementary in the Grandview School District.
HU105 teacher candidates also have the opportunity to receive preparation to teach students with special needs. “Districts across the Valley have asked HU105 to add the special education endorsement for a number of years. The preparation of Special Education teachers is a high priority and necessary to meet district needs,” says Dr. Corrine McGuigan, HU105 Co-Director at Heritage University.
Through the HU105 program, candidates also receive their English Language Learner (ELL) endorsement, which makes them highly marketable to future employers. HU105 graduates are highly sought after by Washington public schools. Over 97% of the program’s 2012-13 graduates are currently working as classroom teachers.
HU105 began in 2010 with two school districts participating. Now the program is about to expand into its fifth district, the Richland School District. RSD officials are excited over the prospect of seeing those changes in their classrooms as well.
“HU105 was recently cited as the most innovative teacher training program in the state by the Professional Education Standards Board,” said Erich Bolz, Assistant Superintendent for the Richland School District. “We are very excited to bring HU105 to Richland. Not only will it be terrific for the classrooms that have HU105 candidates in them, but the teachers that graduate from the program are extremely talented and will likely stay in the Richland School District once they graduate.“
The new cohort of candidates from the Tri-Cities is expected to join the Richland School District in the fall.
HU105 program leaders and faculty say the program, which was initially funded by a five-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education, is on the verge of becoming self-sufficient. “Tuition from teacher candidates expected to enroll in HU105 for the 2014-15 school year, should generate enough revenue to cover the program’s cost,” says McGuigan.
For more information contact:
Dr. Corrine McGuigan, HU105 Director, Heritage University, (509) 865-8563 or email@example.com.
Mark Cheney, HU105 Project Manager, ESD 105, (509) 853-2046 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steve Aagaard, Communications Director, Richland School District, (509) 967-6008 or email@example.com.