Campus: Office of the Chancellor -- March 22, 2001
First 133 Teachers To Receive Credentials Through
Two commencement ceremonies planned to celebrate the success of alternative
The first 133 participants of California State University's innovative
CalStateTEACH, an alternative teacher education program for elementary
school teachers, will be recognized in two commencement ceremonies on
March 25 and April 1 for students throughout the state.
"These teachers are filling the urgent need for skilled and experienced
teachers in our elementary schools," said CSU Chancellor Charles
B. Reed. "They should be commended for their dedication and commitment
to teach California's children."
CalStateTEACH is targeted to teachers who need to complete a Multiple
Subject Credential with emphasis on Cross-Cultural, Language, and Academic
Development (CLAD), and are unable to attend a CSU campus on a regular
basis because of work schedules, family obligations or distance from a
Approximately 30,000 teachers in California are not fully credentialed,
but hold either a waiver or an emergency permit.
CalStateTEACH provides high quality education by offering a personalized
program that combines independent study with on-line support by accessing
the latest in technology including Internet, video, and print materials.
The coursework consists of assignments and activities that integrate the
teaching experiences in the classroom. The flexibility of the program
is designed to allow independent study at the time and place of the student's
choice, which usually revolves around their teaching schedules. For additional
support, teachers are assigned to regional centers located at CSU Fresno/Monterey
Bay, CSU Hayward, CSU Fullerton, Cal Poly Pomona, and Cal State L.A.
One great advantage of the program is that it delivers quality instruction
to teachers who live in remote areas miles away from a CSU campus. For
example, Cheryl Lira is a second grade teacher at Avalon Elementary School
located on Santa Catalina Island in Southern California.
"Before I found out about CalStateTEACH, I considered leaving
the island and my family to get my teaching credential," said Lira,
who has lived on the island for nine years with her husband and her
5-year old daughter. "The program allowed me to keep my family
together, teach, and get my credential. CalStateTEACH helped me grow
personally and professionally as an educator and my students have greatly
Although Lira and other teachers had no regular university courses to
attend, they did have to attend five Saturday seminars that were part
of the program's requirements. Students are also required to stay on
schedule with course work.
"I would recommend this program to those who are self-motivated
and know how to balance their time." Lira said. "You have
to be self-structured and organized in the time that you are allotted
to turn in your work."
The graduation ceremonies are not only intended to recognize students
who have received certification, but also to celebrate the ongoing success
of the program, which is modeled after the successful British Open University
program. The March 25 commencement ceremony is for students who reside
in northern California and the central valley. It will take place at
the Walnut Creek Marriott at 2 p.m. For Southern California residents,
the graduation ceremony is April 1 at the Irvine Marriott.
The CSU educates 60 percent of the state's teachers, and CalStateTEACH
is one of the many initiatives CSU has implemented in recent years to
improve the quality and quantity of California's teachers.