IDAHO — Teachers are in short supply in Idaho. After a challenging pandemic, many educators have left the field and not enough people have replaced them. Plus, that shortage applies to leadership roles as well.
A partnership program between the University of Idaho and the West Ada School District looks to help prepare candidates for these crucial positions.
“It is evident that a highly effective leader in a school, a building principal and assistant principal can change the tide of teaching and learning,” West Ada Chief Academic Officer Marcus Myers said.
“The latest cohort grows out of an organic need. They needed a unique solution to really be able to up their capacity in terms of having principals to serve in the roles of those schools,” University of Idaho Assistant Professor in the Education Leadership program Liz Wargo said.
All of the members of the cohorts must be current West Ada employees, are trained by West Ada leaders and more.
"We’ve got 24 upcoming, building leaders ready to go in West Ada who has learned through the lens of how we get things done in West Ada and the West Ada way but still looking through the lens of what those Idaho administrative standards are,” Myers said.
U of I has tailored its expertise in leadership training to meet West Ada’s needs.
“So we help make sense of our curriculum which is standards align and known as being pretty rigorous and we help them translate that into applicable ways and they really help candidates build the unique meaning about how to actually apply the theory and research," Wargo said.
"In modeling good and effective teaching practices and modeling future leadership and building that capacity, this is something that we’re all in together including all of those students in the cohort. They really are giving it their all and a tremendous amount of time to meet their career goals,” Myers said.
The current cohort is expected to finish in Spring 2023. To learn more about the program, click here.