Denver Public Schools fills hard-to-staff teaching positions in high-needs elementary schools by hiring college grads who didn’t major in education and then training them on the job.
The highly selective Denver Teacher Residency program offers would-be teachers an alternative route into a teaching—other than through the traditional four-year bachelor’s degree in education. Once in the program, each teacher-in-training is paired with a teacher/mentor and co-teaches in a classroom as an apprentice for a full academic year. At the same time, the trainees take tuition-free, graduate-level coursework at the University of Denver’s Morgridge College of Education.
In exchange, the new teachers commit to teach in the school system’s high-needs schools for five years.
The program has served as a steady pipeline to bring more teachers to Denver, which has the fastest-growing school district in the country.
Many of the teacher candidates are mid-career professionals in other fields and are looking for a change, says Shannon Hagerman, director of teacher preparation pathways for the school system.
Contact: Jennifer Miller of Denver Public Schools, (303) 394-2366.