In 2020/21, as the world retreated behind screens, we grappled with ways to stay true to our belief that community matters in teacher preparation. Thankfully, as former teachers ourselves, we are accustomed to shifting on the fly. The amazing residents and teachers of record who chose 2020, of all years, to enter the profession deserved our very best.
We adapted by shifting our summer institutes to a hybrid format. We emphasized building community and promoting wellness in our Professional Learning Communities. PEBC coaches, unable to be physically present in classrooms, used video to provide residents with time-stamped feedback, and residents Zoomed into Lab Classrooms to see PEBC Lab Hosts delivering best practice instruction.
Despite the challenges that these new teachers faced, three amazing things happened between March of 2020 and today:
- The PEBC Teacher Residency recommended licensure for 66 residents and teachers of record and, despite trends in the opposite direction, the PEBC Teacher Residency grew. During this 2021/22 school year, 87 program participants are working in ECE through 12th grade classrooms across the state.
- PEBC’s teachers-in-training are an increasingly diverse group. One in five PEBC Teacher Residents identify as People of Color as opposed to roughly one in ten in the Colorado teacher workforce.
- PEBC launched a successful Pay For Success pilot, in collaboration with Social Impact Solutions, focused on an outcome of increasing in-district retention of residents. Working closely with school district partners in both rural and urban parts of the state, we designed a pilot for the 2021-22 school year with a total of 10 school/district partners - far exceeding our initial goal of two. Our partners clearly believe in the outcomes our residency produces and we are heeding the clarion call to scale.
Overall, I’m inspired by the fire that I see in the eyes of every resident and teacher of record in our program. These are not a group of educators who are looking for the easiest way to earn a teaching license; these are mission-driven people who want to serve the greatest need. These residents put their trust in the PEBC Teacher Residency to provide them with the skills to make the greatest impact possible on each and every learner they serve.
If you or someone you know would make a great teacher, please direct them to https://www.pebc.org/teacher-preparation/. We are currently accepting applications for our 2022/23 cohorts.