Unique “WeTeach” Program Provides Support, Experience for Future Teachers

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For Immediate Release
Contact: Victoria Campbell
 Unique “WeTeach” Program Provides Support,
Experience for Future Teachers
Reno, NV (February 15, 2017) – High school students who want to pursue careers in education can get a head start on achieving their goals through the WeTeach program, a collaboration between the Washoe County School District (WCSD) and the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR). The WeTeach program is directly aligned with Gov. Brian Sandoval’s focus on developing workforce pathways in five key areas, including Education/Educator Training. Students who participate in the WeTeach program may earn college credit by completing a dual-credit course and an internship while still in high school. These college credits are free to students, and have been funded by a private grant.
“We are very excited about the WeTeach program,” said WCSD Chief Human Resources Officer Dawn Huckaby. “Not only does it provide an opportunity for our students to earn free college credits, but it supports the District's goals around college and career readiness and is part of our talent strategy focused on attracting and retaining high quality staff to support our students. It is our hope that this experience will inspire students to become teachers. By providing opportunities for them to work as paraprofessionals while pursuing their teaching credential, they'll be gaining valuable experience while filling an important role in the classroom. We look forward to these students joining our team of dedicated teachers in the future."
“This is a fantastic mentoring opportunity for our students,” said WCSD Area Superintendent Debra Biersdorff. “Currently, we have a great group of students at Sparks High School who are learning from UNR staff members, and are taking their newfound knowledge to Robert Mitchell Elementary School, where they’re working with younger students. It’s such an inspiration to see these high school students exploring their education goals so early in their academic journeys.”
“I’m so proud of our students and their desire to learn more about pursuing education as a career,” said Sparks High School Principal Kevin Carroll. “They are enthusiastic and eager to learn, and I know they will make great teachers someday.”
“I am impressed with the caliber of students who are visiting our school and learning about the education field,” said Teri Vaughan, principal at Mitchell Elementary School. “The younger students look forward to working with them because they bring such a fresh approach to our classrooms.”
Media Availability
What: Sparks High School students who are aspiring educators can talk about their participation in the WeTeach program, while others will visit and interact with students in classrooms at Robert Mitchell Elementary School under the direction of WCSD Staffing Coordinator Adriana Publico, who has been instrumental in organizing and running the program. Greg Nielsen, Ph.D. is the UNR staff member who has facilitated the program at the university.
Students and staff members will be available for interviews at two locations. (Please note that these schools are located a half-block apart.)
Date: Thursday, February 16
Time: 2:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
           Media will have the opportunity to speak with Dr. Nielsen and Sparks High School students who are currently enrolled in the
           EDU 110 about their plans to pursue careers in education.
Place: Sparks High School
           820 15th St.
Time: 3:15 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.
           Media will have the opportunity to speak with high school students who took the EDU 110 class last semester, and are
           currently interning with students at Robert Mitchel Elementary School.
Place: Robert Mitchell Elementary School
           1216 Prater Way
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