The chairman of the House Education Committee has come up with a plan that would let college graduates with three years of work experience get a teaching license within a year. Republican Representative Dustin Hite of New Sharon says Iowa school administrators tell him they’re having a hard time hiring teachers.
“Making sure that we have quality, qualified teachers for years to come is just important to all Iowans,” Hite says. “It’s certainly important to people like me who have kids in school.”
These alternative licenses would be for potential teachers in 7th through 12th-grade courses and Hite’s proposal would require applicants to complete an internship in a classroom and 15 additional hours of college credit. That would be faster than the current pathway for prospective teachers. Hite says he’s hoping his plan will appeal to people with lived experience in key occupations who are looking for a second career.
“There’s people who have a range of different jobs. Down where I live we have a lot of different industries. We have Cargill, so we have chemists who work there. We’ve got Vermeer and Musco, so we have engineers who work there, so I think you actually will find a lot of those people throughout the state.”
Hite expects his plan will be considered in the House Education Committee this week or early next week.