A new initiative “Next Education Workforce” is strengthening a deeper and more personalized learning for all children

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The “Next Education Workforce” is the result of years of research and development by ASU’s College of Education. We spoke with the workforce’s Brent Maddin about innovative new efforts to help K-12 students.

“Honestly, we’re in a really challenging time for educators both here in Arizona and across the country. The expectations of educators, the working conditions, the fact that educators are having to cover for the classrooms of their colleagues who are missing. All of this just translates into I think a problem that we’ve been seeing for a really long time…which is, we don’t have enough great teachers in all of our classrooms,” Maddin said.

Within the teacher workforce, many are leaving due to burnout and some are leaving early into their teaching career.

“No matter the amount of great preparation they’ve had, the job of being a classroom teacher…is one of the most rewarding but also it’s very, very complicated,” Maddin said.

How has COVID affected education?

“Before COVID, there were already 180 things that educators needed to know and be able to do, to be experts in. And interestingly, the first day on the job, looks remarkably similar to say the 3,000th day on the job,” Maddin said.

For years people have worked to get a higher salary for teachers in the state but another thing to be conscious of is that, “we need to fundamentally question the way that we’ve organized the staffing of our schools.”

A new initiative “Next Education Workforce” has started at ASU.

This initiative allows for those in the education workforce to work together with the same children in a classroom which would therefor work on the promise of a deeper and more personalized learning for all kids.

Brent Maddin, Executive Director, ASU Next Education Workforce Initiative

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