The goal of the UC-wide Cal Teach Initiative is to encourage UC students majoring or planning to major in Math, Science and Engineering to consider teaching as a career. The Cal Teach Initiative plans to put 1,000 new science and math teachers annually into California classrooms, affecting over 1,000,000 minds!
There is a great need for teachers. Over the next decade California will need 195,000 teachers to take on the challenging yet rewarding job of teaching our state’s youths. According to the California Department of Education, more than 2,100 additional math teachers were needed in 2007–08. In 2007-08, nearly 25% of California’s high schools science classes were taught by teachers with either no teaching credential or a credential in an unrelated subject. The data from urban schools is even more challenging where as many as 50% of science teachers are non-credentialed. The National Science Foundation recently reported that in national comparisons of 8th graders, California scored last in the country in sciences and 7th from the bottom in mathematics.
There is also great potential to make a difference. Projections indicate that more than 30% of California’s teacher workforce will be eligible to retire in the next decade. While the economy is forcing some districts to “pink slip” teachers, hiring math and science teachers remains a top priority.
The UCLA Cal Teach program is committed to encouraging and supporting students interested in K-12 math and science teaching. Our courses include observation, participation and assisting in K-12 schools, and seminars to support those field experiences. Through our program you will explore teaching in the elementary, middle and high school settings. We offer you a guided exploration of teaching as a career, personal advising as you explore and prepare for a teaching career, and assistance and financial support for subject matter preparation.
Our program wants the best and the brightest to experience, first-hand, the amazing impact that they can have on teaching and that teaching can have on them. We look forward to hearing from you!!
To read more about about the history of the UC Compact that created the program, click here.