Published by: My Columba Basin
MONMOUTH, Ore. – For a decade, Oregon has suffered a shortage of bilingual teachers according to federal statistics. Western Oregon University has decided it wants to help grow its own next generation of bilingual educators.
WOU has joined forces with a few public school districts in the state to initiate the Bilingual Teachers Scholars Program. Under the plan, the high schools pick seniors who are good candidates to become bilingual educators. They then study at Western and return to their home district to teach.
“The program is working well,” Mark Girod dean of WOU’s College of Education said. “We are looking for other funding sources so we can expand and include other school districts.”
Currently, graduates of Central High School, Woodburn High School and any Salem/Keizer high school are eligible to participate in the program. As part of the program, students obtain summer jobs as classroom tutors and are guaranteed to have an interview for a teaching job in their home school districts.