In Greenville South Carolina, a potential teacher shortage is being alleviated because alternative teacher education certifies qualified teachers who have degrees but not state certification.
Ben Saul should have had no problem teaching in South Carolina, as he has a master’s degree in education from Harvard University. However, he had not taken the necessary classes to fulfill certification requirements.
He found that GATE, the Greenville Alternative Teacher Education Program, could provide him with three weeks of intensive training, and then place in in a classroom. He is now an intervention teacher, working with students who struggle with math.
“I really enjoy it, especially getting to work in smaller groups with students who have been struggling in math and then getting to see the light bulb go on,” Saul said.
GATE participants have a three week introduction, then have on the job training for three years.
“We look for people who are interested in teaching math or science at the middle or secondary level and who do not have certification in education,” said Debra Lee, clinical director of the GATE Program.