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SAISD launches “Para to Ph.D.” programs to create career progression pipeline for educators
Oct. 12, 2021 – San Antonio ISD this school year launched a new initiative that gives staff members a clear direction on how to become qualified for career advancement within the district. The Para to Ph.D. Career Pathways Programs are expected to improve recruitment, hiring, professional learning, and retention of district educators. 

The programs are robust career development pipelines that support preservice, novice, and experienced educators with professional learning, mentorship, and advanced degree and certification opportunities. The overall initiative is being funded by several recently awarded, competitive grants that will be used to take existing programs to scale and to implement new approaches to educator learning and career development. 

The initiative involves the following programs:

Assisting educators to achieve National Board Certification, which is supported by a four-year, $620,000 grant from the Charles Butt Foundation issued through the SAISD Foundation. This program is in its second year. Participants who complete the two-year program are eligible for the Teacher Incentive Allotment.

Introducing educators to the Equity Centered Educator Pipeline Initiative, which is supported by a three-year $11.5 million U.S. Department of Education Teacher and School Leader grant. This program funds educators’ attainment of graduate degrees, expanded teacher induction and mentorship, and involvement in culturally sustaining pedagogy cohorts. An additional two years may be funded.

Introducing educators to the Equity Centered Principal Pipeline Initiative, which is supported by a five-year, $8.2 million grant from the Wallace Foundation. It was awarded in partnership with UTSA, UT Austin, and the Texas Education Agency. This program will build campus leaders through principal mentorship, equity-centered leadership development, and participation in a leader tracking system.

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