Department of Education, USA, supports teachers with a scholarship fund that will help them get a master’s degree to be a school administrator.
Texas A&M University is running a unique program that will help the teachers to advance in their career to become principals.
APLUS: Accelerated Preparation of Leaders for Underserved Schools
Under this program, teachers who have been working in “underserved schools” or those who work with students learning English language are given a chance to advance professionally. They will receive the required training and hands-on experience to become an administrator.
They will learn program coordination and acquire the necessary leadership skills in this program. There are a hundred teachers who have been accepted into this program.
One of the “students” of this program is a second-grade educator called Fawn Simpson. As part of the course requirement, she has created a summer camp for her city of Hearne.
iEducate is a non-profit organization based in Houston. One of the APLUS program requirements is for the participants to conduct recruitment of college or high school students for the summer school who will be the “teachers” for the summer.
Program attendants like Simpson are required to create a program schedule, help execute the curriculum while monitoring and giving feedback to these “teachers” – all the things a principal would do in her daily life.
Simpson’s summer camp had forty-eight students. These children were either behind their levels in English or had attendance issues. She was happy to note that the school had near perfect attendance.
Stating that her main objective was to create an environment where her students felt safe and committed, she also added, “I want them to understand that education can be fun and that this summer’s just for trying to fill a gap or two and to slow that summer slide.”
This program is beneficial for people who have chosen to work in underserved communities and by extension, their students. APLUS grant is provided for three years. Program coordinator, Elsa Villarreal, commented that the university would continue to explore options for more funds so that the program can be made available to more teachers across Texas.