June 15, 2016

Relay Graduate School Opens Second Teacher Training Campus In Louisiana

BATON ROUGE, La. – Today, Relay Graduate School of Education announced the launch of its 11th campus dedicated to teacher training. The new site in Baton Rouge is Relay’s second campus in Louisiana after opening in New Orleans in 2013. Starting this summer, Relay’s rigorous model of curriculum and practice will prepare 30 teachers to best meet the needs of Baton Rouge students. This will help further the work that Relay has already started to train a quality teacher workforce in Louisiana.“At Democracy Prep, we believe that excellent teachers are the foundation for scholar success. One of our biggest challenges every year is finding the right teachers for our growing network of schools,” said Michelle Gieg, executive director of Democracy Prep Baton Rouge, which currently runs an elementary and middle school. “By partnering with Relay, we see a unique opportunity to grow and develop our own talent through its residency program.”Relay Baton Rouge will launch two programs. The Relay Teaching Residency provides a gradual on-ramp to a career in teaching, where residents teach under the guidance of an experienced teacher in their first year and become full-time teachers in the second year of the program. The Baton Rouge Teacher Certification will provide current teachers in Baton Rouge schools with practical, high-quality training in techniques that make the deepest impact in urban classrooms. Relay will recommend successful program participants for Louisiana state teacher certification after one year, and these individuals will have the option to continue for a second year and earn their Master of Arts in Teaching.The first class of an estimated 30 Baton Rouge teachers will join a community of about 80 aspiring and novice teachers trained by Relay in New Orleans as well as 40 Louisiana principals who have participated in Relay’s National Principals Academy Fellowship (NPAF) since 2013.“What sets Relay apart from other programs is its focus on practice and helping teachers and principals build skills that they can implement immediately in the classroom,” said Kathryn Rice, Baton Rouge College Preparatory Charter School director and NPAF graduate. “I’m thrilled that my teachers will now be able to attend Relay right here in Baton Rouge.”The Relay teacher preparation model is noted for preparing diverse candidates, including recent college graduates, experienced professionals, and local aspiring educators, to work effectively in low-income communities. Relay-trained teachers produced 1.4 years of reading growth in the 2014-15 school year.The Relay faculty consists of proven K-12 public school educators whose aim is to ensure that teachers are prepared for the realities of teaching. Participants receive hundreds of opportunities for feedback and to grow their confidence in the face of mistakes, all while working to demonstrate measurable and meaningful student academic and character gains. New Schools for Baton Rouge, a community partnership committed to delivering excellent schools to students and families in Baton Rouge, provided financial and strategic support to make Relay’s expansion to Baton Rouge possible.“At New Schools for Baton Rouge, we’re focused on ensuring every child in our city has access to a great public school,” said Chris Meyer, CEO of New Schools for Baton Rouge. “We are excited to support Relay Baton Rouge, which will help us reach our shared vision of a city where every school works for the children they serve.”

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