Baldwin County School District is pleased to announce that it has been selected as a recipient of the esteemed 2023-2024 Cultivating Teachers Grant; a $9,000 award by the Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE). This grant aims to address the recent decline in student enrollment within Educator Preparation Programs across Georgia, which has adversely affected teacher recruitment efforts.
To address the teacher shortage, the Baldwin County School District has implemented a "Grow Your Own" Teacher Program in partnership with post-secondary institutions in the middle Georgia region, including Georgia College & State University, Central Georgia Technical College, Georgia Military College, Fort Valley State, Middle Georgia State University, and Mercer University. It seeks to address the teacher pipeline in a comprehensive and strategic manner. This innovative and collaborative program focuses on creating a replicable teacher pipeline model to address the teacher shortage in rural Georgia. Our Baldwin "Grow Your Own" Teacher Program will identify potential middle and high school students and provide them with early exposure to the teaching profession. When students enter the 9th grade in the Baldwin County School District, they will begin the CTAE Teaching as a Profession Pathway. During their high school years, they will participate in dual enrollment coursework and hands-on teaching experiences, as well as the opportunity to have paid work-based learning in the Baldwin County School District.
The program will also enable students in the Teaching as a Profession Pathway to graduate from high school with an associate's degree or college credits from post-secondary institutions in the middle Georgia region. They will then transfer to a partner institution to complete their undergraduate degree in education. Once students graduate with their undergraduate degree from post-secondary institutions in the middle Georgia region, they are guaranteed an opportunity to interview with the Baldwin County School District. Pending approvals from all parties, the program will be implemented in the 2023-2024 school year.
The Baldwin County School District is excited to have received the GaDOE Cultivating Teachers Grant for pathway expansion and support. These funds are designed to provide professional learning and educator recruitment support to school districts with scheduled courses in the Teaching as a Profession Pathway.
The Georgia Department of Education has awarded $350,000 to provide financial support to 38 school districts with Teaching as a Profession Pathway courses. “We are committed to providing support for programs cultivating the next generation of Georgia educators,” said State Superintendent Richard Woods. “Teaching is the only profession that impacts all other professions, and we want to ensure we provide the best educational opportunities for students who wish to become teachers.”
Teaching as a Profession is one of more than 100 Career Pathways available to Georgia students through the Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education program. Career Pathways allow students to learn skills for real-world careers and earn recognized industry credentials.