By Andi Bailey
In March, I wrote an article about my experience lobbying for House Bill 1219, The Educator Shortage Act. If you haven’t given it a read (which you should) here’s a synopsis. “HB 1219 was proposed by Governor Moore in order to help student-teachers to reduce the teacher shortage. This bill aspires to reform the Teaching Fellows for Maryland program to expand the eligibility to non-Maryland residents, establish a Grow-Your-Own program for future teachers which would provide scholarships to future teachers who promise to work full-time in Maryland upon graduation, and most excitingly in my opinion, establish the Educator Internship Stipend program which provides stipends of up to 20,000 dollars for student teachers actively participating in an internship, and more. This will help more students graduate with a teaching certification and in turn, help turn around the teacher shortage here in Maryland.”
While the bill was passed, it was not before many amendments. The expansion of the Grow-Your-Own program in the bill was removed, and the 20,000-dollar stipend was amended to only be available to schools that have 40 percent or more of their students receiving Pell Grants. So, what does this mean for NDMU students? Unfortunately, education majors here are not eligible to apply for the student teaching stipend. However, the passing of this bill, even with the amendments, is a step in the right direction for education majors in Maryland. If you want to get involved with other future educators here at NDMU, watch out for future Gator’s Teach events next school year, we have many fun and educational events planned!
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