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Good for Teachers, Good for Kids

These California Senators are working on three bills that will help to ensure that every student has a high-quality teacher in his or her classroom.

Policymakers in California are back in session, and several senators are working on legislation to improve teacher preparation and retention. At Common Sense Kids Action, we know that what's good for teachers is good for kids. But the projected teacher shortage in our state will set our students back, which has grave consequences for our future if we don't take action now

The truth is that California has the worst student-to-teacher ratio in the country. Our schools are facing a perfect storm of large numbers of retiring teachers, low enrollment in teacher-preparation programs, and reverberations from previous years of teacher layoffs. 

Common Sense Kids Action is extremely concerned about this situation, because one of our goals is to ensure that every student has a high-quality teacher in his or her classroom. That's why we support the following bills: 

SB 62 (Pavley) would reinstate one of our state's most successful teacher-recruitment and financial aid programs: the Assumption Program of Loans for Education (APLE) program. It would help address the teacher shortage by reducing the financial cost of becoming a teacher. 

SB 915 (Liu) would reestablish the CalTeach program to help recruit teachers from colleges, other careers, and other states and provide them with information on becoming a teacher. 

SB 933 (Allen) would provide local school districts with funding to create or expand teacher-residency programs and allow program participants to apprentice alongside a mentor teacher for a year while completing coursework and earning a stipend. In exchange, program participants must make a commitment to teach in the district for four years. 

Common Sense Kids Action will connect our advocates to members of the state legislature in the weeks ahead so they can easily express support for these bills. To participate, become a Kids Action Advocate today!

Briana Calleros
Briana Calleros is Common Sense Kids Action's Policy Associate for California. She joined Kids Action in 2015 from the California Institute for Federal Policy Research in Washington D.C., where she served as legislative director. Prior to that, she staffed legislation that was signed into law as a California capitol fellow in Senator Marty Block's office. Briana began her career in policy as an intern with National Council of La Raza and a summer associate at the White House Office of Presidential Correspondence. She graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College in 2012.