The Appalachian Model Teaching Consortium: Preparing Teachers for Rural Appalachia

Alvin C. Proffit, R. Paul Sale, Ann E. Alexander, Ruth S. Andrews

Abstract


The Appalachian Model Teacher Consortium is a partnership involving Radford University, Wytheville Community College, and the Grayson County (Virginia) School System. Its purpose is to prepare highly qualified teachers for rural southwest Virginia. The model was developed in response to the growing teacher shortage facing school districts in rural southwest Virginia. Poorer, more rural districts often have weaker tax bases that provide limited, and at times inadequate, financial support for their school districts. This lack of local resources often results in lower salaries and benefits when compared to many districts that compete for the shrinking pool of potential teachers. Additionally, rural communities are often geographically isolated areas and have fewer amenities that attract young teachers from outside the district. The Appalachian Model Teacher Consortium attempts to naturalize shortages by recruiting potential teachers from the local area, and providing incentives for them to stay and teach in their home community.

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