Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Arizona House Democrats: Veterans Reach To Teach Initiative

Employment Recruitment Program Launches May 4

Through a strategic partnership directed by the Checkered Flag Run Foundation, veterans and their families throughout the Valley will be supported to become Guest Teacher Substitutes in Arizona. “We want to create an opportunity for veterans who served their country to now have the opportunity to serve in the classroom” said Checkered Flag Run founder Alan “AP” Powell, a U.S.  Army Desert Storm Veteran.

In a recent survey conducted by the Arizona School Administers, 52 school districts reported to have almost 1,700 vacancies for the 2016-2017 school year. This number represents a drastic increase from the 1,200 vacancies reported by 85 school districts in August 2015. 

The Veterans Reach To Teach initiative was created to serve as a resource for local school districts affected by the large number of teacher vacancies, while also serving as a bridge for veterans looking to serve their local communities in education.

The VRtT initiative will assist veterans with a bachelor’s degree in securing their substitute teaching certificates and prepare them for substitute teaching during the summer months. Guest Teacher substitutes are currently in high demand.

Teachers On Call Arizona, a local educational services agency, has partnered with Checkered Flag Run Foundation, the Black Chamber of Arizona, the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the American Legion Post 65, and Arizona State Representative Reginald Bolding to connect, engage and prepare veterans for substitute teaching assignments beginning in August 2016.

State Representative Reginald Bolding noted “when a teacher is absent, without a substitute available - classes are frequently combined or other teachers lose their preparation period. This can impact multiple classroom learning environments. Quality substitute teachers can have a direct impact on under-served student populations.”

Teachers On Call Arizona will provide veterans with a wide variety of Professional Development courses, including specially developed coursework, and will work closely with new veteran Guest Teachers to ensure they are well prepared for success in the classroom.  “Children respond well to interesting people in their lives, and we are confident that well-prepared veteran guest teachers will resonate with children. New veteran Guest Teachers will play an important role in meeting the needs of teachers throughout the Valley in the coming school year and beyond,” explained an excited Dan Nienhauser, Executive Director Teachers On Call Arizona.

Veterans Reach To Teach launch event will take place at 10am on Wednesday, May 4th, at the American Legion Post 65 in Phoenix (NE corner of 16th Street and Broadway Rd). Speakers include Arizona State Representative Reginald Bolding, Dan Nienhauser, Dr. Robert Pipkin (veteran and former principal/substitute teacher), and Kerwin Brown (President/CEO, Black Chamber of Arizona). Veterans will be able to meet with school district leaders, learn more about the substitute process, and even apply for an IVP Fingerprint card on site. Several Valley school districts have already expressed an early interest in joining the initiative including Creighton School District, Laveen Elementary School District, Phoenix Union High School District, Tempe Elementary School District, and Tolleson Union High School District.

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About Checkered Flag Run Foundation (“CFRF”): CRFR’s mission is to provide diverse educational programs that impact under-served students. Our belief is access to quality educational opportunities ensures the investment of every student getting to cross the “finish line”.

About Teachers On Call Arizona (“TOCA”): TOCA is a local, Arizona-based educational agency that is committed to the highest quality Guest Teachers and superior direct/temp-to-perm educational services.

About the Black Chamber of Arizona(“BCOA”):  The mission of the Black Chamber of Arizona (BCA) is to improve the economic development of our business entrepreneurs and the communities we serve.

About Arizona State Representative Reginald Bolding: Rep. Bolding represents Legislative District 27 which covers Downtown Phoenix, South Phoenix, Laveen, Guadalupe and parts of Gila River Indian Community. He serves on both the House Education Committee and the Ways and Means Committee.