Georgia's New-Teacher Warranty Education School Principles Offered

Article excerpt

The Board of Regents agreed yesterday to give Georgia school

districts a first-of-its-kind warranty on new teachers produced

by the state's public colleges.

Poor-performing teachers would be sent back to college for

additional schooling at no cost to them or their districts.

The warranty is part of a 10-point statement of principles

designed to be a framework for the University System of

Georgia's 15 accredited public teacher-education programs.

Other principles include aggressive recruitment of top-caliber

students to become teachers, and an emphasis on ending

out-of-field teaching in Georgia.

"This is an incredible step that the Board of Regents has

taken, to ensure that quality and collaboration are the

hallmarks of teacher education in Georgia," said Jan Kettlewell,

assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs.

"The ultimate goal of this study -- and of developing the

principles and the action plans that will follow -- is that new

teachers should be able to bring about higher levels of student

learning in the classrooms because they will be better

prepared."

Regents last fall began studying how to improve the

recruitment, training and retention of teachers.

Under the principles, the university system would readmit any

teacher within the first two years after graduation if a school

district is dissatisfied. The system would provide free

additional training.

Some colleges around the country have provided similar

warranties, but no state has made such a statewide guarantee,

regents officials said.

Chancellor Stephen Portch said he expects the number of

teachers "taken back" by the system will be small.

Most "new" teachers in Georgia schools each year are entering

from other states or returning to the classroom after taking

time off.

Some regents have speculated administrators will be slow to

acknowledge a failing teacher. …