High school students getting hands-on teaching experience with ULM

MONROE, La. (KNOE) - ULM's School of Education is kicking off the national Educators Rising program here in Northeast Louisiana.

ULM is offering a new pilot program to inspire high school students to become teachers. (MGN)

Dr. Amy Weems is an Assistant Professor with ULM's School of Education. She says this pilot program is designed to inspire youth to choose a career in teaching, and give high schoolers hands-on experience in the classroom at a young age.

"Teacher shortages are a significant issue everywhere for districts," says Weems. "And I was just doing some research today that shows that up to 50% of teachers, in some of our neediest schools, are either out of certification area or not certified at all, so we are just looking for ways to close those gaps."

The course will be offered in Ruston, Oak Grove, Neville, and Wossman High Schools. Weems says it's a two-semester program for juniors and seniors, and they'll talk about things like classroom cultures and the foundations of teaching.

Weems says they want to keep teachers in this region too.

"We often find that our rural districts really struggle to find teachers," says Weems. "If you follow 'grow your own statistics' it's really best to recruit students from those smaller districts to come back to teach in those districts."

The program is free for students to enroll in.

Contact Dr. Amy Weems at (318) 342-1280 or weems@ulm.edu for more information.