Promising Alt Cert Programs Passed

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Both Georgia and Rhode Island approved new alternative certification routes for teachers this week.

The Peach State is now allowing college graduates who have not taken college-level education classes to teach, provided they pass the state's certification exams in content and pedagogy and possess a degree in a subject related to the one they will be teaching.

Similarly, the Ocean State made some waves, deciding to (finally) join the 46 other states that claim to offer an alternative route to teaching. The program is designed only for teachers in shortage areas like math, science and special education.

Predictably, not everyone is embracing the new regs. In Georgia, Ronald Caruso, dean of the state university's college of education reflected: "I don't think this is over. I think that the public, especially the parents who are going to have these [teachers], and the legislators need to know what this means." Perhaps it means that districts will have a larger pool from which to pick highly qualified teachers, but that's probably not what he meant.