Vol. 15 : No. 11< >
Distance Education and the Critical Teacher Shortages
DEOS: Sun, 08 Jul 2001 21:18:32 -0400
Betty Rendon email@example.com
Moorhead State University used distance education as a solution to a chronic teacher shortage (mostly special education) in a rural section along the Minnesota/North Dakota border. It seems that most of the special education instructors in this area were uncertified.
They would teach for a couple of years via a temporary certificate. Since they were needed in the classroom, there was little free time for them to drive the long distance to a university to attend classes to meet the requirements for permanent certification. Thus, when the temporary certification expired, the school system would have to let them go and put another individual with zero experience but a valid temporary certification into the classroom. It was a vicious cycle!
They decided that distance education was the answer.
The research has shown that distance learning is just as effective as traditional learning. The data from this research demonstrates that with the rising cost of education, there are a variety of inexpensive, yet effective alternatives to face-to-face instruction available for continuing education programs of colleges and universities. Couldn't distance learning perhaps be part of the solution for the critical teacher shortages around this nation today?
Just a thought,