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IU responds to critical need for teachers in Indiana


As the state's flagship university, we have a responsibility to help address the shortage of preschool to 12th-grade teachers. IU is working closely with school districts across the state to support their needs for qualified teachers in Indiana classrooms.

Through IU Kokomo’s Tomorrow’s Teachers: Growing Our Own program, high school students interested in joining the teaching profession earn college credits while gaining first-hand experience in the classroom. Participating in the initiative helped IU Kokomo junior Marlie Chaffee decide to pursue a career in teaching. She was among the first students from Western High School to participate. 

Under the direction of Sandi Cole, the Indiana Center on Teacher Quality at IU Bloomington’s Center on Education and Lifelong Learning works to retain and increase the number of licensed teachers in rural districts. This grant-supported project addresses the need for special education teachers and ensures that students with disabilities have access to high-quality instruction. 

The IU School of Education in Bloomington has created another path for teachers to join the profession with a new hybrid Transition to Teaching program. Led by Alycia Elfreich, this initiative lets non-traditional students stay in their home communities while accessing high-quality university teacher preparation. IU Bloomington graduate Rachel Ledbetter secured a full-time position at North Central High School in Indianapolis through the program.

IUPUI’s Hoosier STEM Academy recruits, prepares, places and retains educators and addresses teacher shortages in the STEM subject areas of science, technology, engineering and math. The efforts of IUPUI’s Paula Magee, a clinical professor in the School of Education, and Kathleen Marrs, an associate professor of biology at the School of Science, are meeting a critical need for STEM teachers and increasing the diversity of the state’s education workforce. 

IU Northwest’s School of Education established a partnership with the School City of Hammond through its Urban Teacher Preparation Program, which now has nearly 100 teachers enrolled and promotes professional development while improving student outcomes. 

Addressing the need for qualified teachers represents our recognition that we must do our part to strengthen our state and improve lives across Indiana.


Pamela Whitten

Indiana University

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