UofM College of Education Partners with the Tennessee Department of Education for Grow Your Own Program

March 2, 2023 — The University of Memphis College of Education has partnered with the Tennessee Department of Education through Tennessee’s Grow Your Own (GYO) initiative — immediately expanding opportunity to train future teachers and strengthening the teacher pipeline in Tennessee.

UofM joins eight other recently approved Educator Preparation Programs across Tennessee that will partner with local districts to help create a simple pathway for students who are interested in teaching to receive the training and credentials needed to serve in local classrooms. Tennessee Teacher Apprenticeships are a sustainable recruitment strategy to address both short- and long-term needs by addressing localized district staffing challenges.

"The GYO Program will positively impact the apprentices who participate as well as our district partners,” said Dr. Nichelle Robinson, director of the Office of Teacher Education and Clinical Practice.

“Each cohort of apprentices will build bonds with each other and our UofM College of Education faculty as they receive the support needed to become teachers who will positively impact student learning. We will see the teacher pipeline grow over time as apprentices return to their community as highly effective classroom teachers familiar with their districts and the students those districts serve."

In addition to the partnership, the UofM College of Education has been approved for subgrant funding from the Tennessee Grow Your Own Center to support teacher apprentices who will begin program coursework in summer 2023. These funds will go to support apprentice tuition, fees, Praxis costs and mentor stipends – providing students in the program with a truly no-cost educational experience.

“We are excited to have our College of Education approved as one of the state’s Grow Your Own teacher apprenticeship providers,” said Dr. Kandi Hill-Clarke, dean of the College of Education. “This collaborative effort will allow school districts and educator preparation programs to enhance teacher pipeline efforts as we work to prepare classroom and student ready teachers.”

Learn more about the program from the Tennessee Department of Education. (https://www.tn.gov/education/news/2023/1/24/grow-your-own-teacher-apprenticeship-opportunities-continue-to-strengthen-tennessee-s-educator-pipeline.html).

Learn more about the subgrant here: https://www.tn.gov/education/news/2023/2/21/tennessee-awards-over--5-million-in-grow-your-own-subgrants-for-teacher-apprenticeship-programs-.html.