UNT Research, Volume 17, 2008 Page: 29
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Pam Harrell g
S c onciary Post Baccalaureate Online Teacher
Certification program. She says the support the UN
teachers receive early makes a difference in how likely
they arp to cortirne in the profession
including the Robert Noyce Scholarship,
the Transition to Teaching program and the
recently announced Teach North Texas
initiative. The university is not only striving
to turn out well-trained educators with
degrees and certification in the subject areas
they teach, but it also is providing support
to teachers after they finish at UNT to
help them choose to stay in the teaching
profession for more than a few years.
"There are plenty of certified teachers.
They just are not teaching," says Pam Harrell,
associate professor of education and program
administrator for UNT's Secondary Post
Baccalaureate Online Teacher Certification
Program. "Although a lot of progress has
been made toward increasing teacher pay. in
general, the increases level out by the fifth
year. Additionally, when the economy is
robust, science and math tch.eCr, arC Jirawn
to high-paying careers."
Most of the attrition happens carly on.
According to statistics cited in a 2006
College Board report, 14 percent of teachers
leave the profession during or after their first
year in the classroom. Ten percent more quit
during or after the second year; another 9
percent bail out during or after the third year;
another 7 percent abandon the job during
or after the fourth year; and 6 percent flame
out during or after the fifth year. It all adds
up to a 46 percent attrition rate after just
"Although some teachers leave to raise
a family or to change jobs, working condi-
tions in schools are considered a major factor
in teacher attrition," says Mary Harris,
Meadows Chair for Excellence in Education
and professor of teacher education and
"New teachers are often assigned the
classes or students that the veterans consider
"There are plenty of certified teachers.
They just are not teaching.
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The support that teachers receive early
can go a long way toward determining how
likely they are to continue in the profession
over the long haul, Harrell says.
She credits the historically low attrition
rate of UNT-trained teachers - more than
85 percent of UNT teachers remain in the
class after three to five years - with the steps
the university takes to ensure the teachers
receive proper guidance even after they've
graduated into the classroom.
Harl credits the Noyce scholarship he
received at UNT with helping him make
the transition from the corporate world to
"I think I had a leg up on other alter-
native-certification teachers because of the
depth of knowledge presented at UNT,"
Recipients of the Noyce scholarship
receive $7,700 a year for a maximum of two
years. Students receiving the scholarship -
which is funded by a five-year grant from
the National Science Foundation that runs
through August 2009 - must maintain a
3.0 grade point average, and they must
commit to teaching at least two years in a
UNT RFSFARCH 2008 " 29
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University of North Texas. UNT Research, Volume 17, 2008, periodical, 2008; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115031/m1/29/: accessed December 11, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting University Relations, Communications & Marketing department for UNT.