A group of school leaders has come up with a plan. The group consists of school board members, principals and administrators, and their plan – in the works for two years – is called Illinois Vision 2020. It’s about making schools run better. Roger L. Eddy, head of the Illinois association of School Boards, says there must be a way to get people with knowledge outside the classroom into the classroom as teachers.
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“We need to expand the alternative teaching licensure program, and make sure that those folks who want to come into education have a clear and quality path in order to change careers and come into the classroom and be educators,” he said.
Other hard proposals: Improve mentoring for teachers, forgive student loans for teachers, especially those who teach in difficult schools, expand pre-school and full-day kindergarten, and make sure every school has high-speed internet.
The report also contains some softer proposals – supporting student creativity, engaging parents and the community, promoting partnerships with post-secondary institutions and encouraging career exploration – as well as some changes to the way state education policy is established and carried out.