CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Many school districts in the Coastal Bend are facing teacher shortages. Staff members at the Three Rivers Independent School District are hoping to combat the problem with the introduction of a new program.
Lindsey McCleandon is an instructor for the Pathways in Technology Early College High Schools Program. She hopes that this program will assist with teacher shortages.
"With the teacher shortage, we are hoping to inspire students at a young age that we need them in education and training,” McCleandon said.
The school received a $440,000 grant from the Texas Education Agency and the district said they're now preparing students for a career in the classroom.
"So the grant allowed us purchase furniture and amazing technology for our students, so we were able to furnish a collaborative space for out student to work with. We have some wonderful camera that were able to video their lesson plans,” she said.
However, what sets this program apart is graduates of this program will not only gain the necessary teaching skills, but will also be awarded a teaching certificate giving them a boost in the job market.
Darla Campbell is a senior at Three Rivers High School. She said that she believes the program is a great start to student’s careers.
"It's an excellent program, especially if you want to pursue education in the future,” Campbell said. “It gives you a lot of hands on and lecture opportunities to pursue that route and it just gives you a lot of life skills on how to work with people especially children.”
On the other hand, Three Rivers freshman Megan Turner said that this is something she has dreamed about.
"I think that this gives me a very good push because I don't think I would have been able to pursue this as a high schooler," Turner said. "Teaching is something that I have always wanted to do because of (my) mom, so this gives me an amazing push.”
The district said that students enrolled in the P-Tech program will be able to start in the classroom right after high school.