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Oklahoma To Pay Student-Teachers In Effort To Combat Teacher Shortage

Jacob McCleland

An estimated 1,300 Oklahoma college students working as student teachers will be paid for their work.

Historically, student-teachers have gone unpaid for their work in public school classrooms.

But for the next three school years, students enrolled in Oklahoma’s teachers colleges will receive a stipend worth $3,250 while student teaching.

Oklahoma’s State Department of Education is using $12.75 million in federal relief funds to pay for the project for the next three years.

The unpaid work has proven to be a barrier to entry into the teaching profession in the past. And Oklahoma continues to try to do anything it can to attract and retain teachers as it battles a teacher shortage.

“The traditional model of student teaching can be a major barrier for students who are supporting a family and cannot go without a paid job for months. This initiative will ensure teacher candidates can instead focus on their student teaching experience,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister said in a news release announcing the program. “We must do everything in our power to not only maintain but strengthen the pipeline of highly trained educators.”

To learn more about the initiative visit this link via Oklahoma’s State Department of Education.

StateImpact Oklahoma is a partnership of Oklahoma’s public radio stations which relies on contributions from readers and listeners to fulfill its mission of public service to Oklahoma and beyond. Donate online.

Robby Korth grew up in Ardmore, Oklahoma and Fayetteville, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Nebraska with a journalism degree.
StateImpact Oklahoma reports on education, health, environment, and the intersection of government and everyday Oklahomans. It's a reporting project and collaboration of KGOU, KOSU, KWGS and KCCU, with broadcasts heard on NPR Member stations.
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