Research tells us that good teaching, along with effective leadership, is the strongest correlate to high student achievement. Based on the medical model of residencies in preparing doctors, the Los Angeles Urban Teacher Residency program recruits highly talented people from diverse backgrounds who are committed to becoming transformative teachers, and places them in a program in which they earn a credential in three semesters and a Master’s degree after an additional 30 semester units. Working closely with a Mentor teacher, Residents learn, on the job, what it means to be a teacher. Blending the theories of teaching with practical applications, Residents learn the essential skills, habits, and knowledge that will best position them to be excellent teachers in high-need urban schools.
Residents are clustered in high-need, reform-minded schools, based on the belief that participating in cohorts strengthens the support and learning that Residents receive. Residents will also participate in professional learning communities and school-wide reform initiatives within each school, with the understanding that becoming an effective teacher also requires a commitment to contribute to creating a high-performing school.