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22-60.5-111.5. Teacher degree apprenticeship program - guidelines - teacher apprenticeship program sponsors - application for authorization with the department - criteria for authorization - program audit.

Statute text

(1) The department shall create and establish guidelines for a teacher degree apprenticeship program on or before January 1, 2024. The department's guidelines must not create unreasonable barriers that prevent access to the teacher apprenticeship program. The guidelines must include:

(a) The minimum passing score for any examination, which must not exceed what is required for any teacher licensure candidate;

(b) Apprentice competencies aligned to the Colorado teacher quality standards and licensure area content standards, which are independently and exclusively evaluated by the apprentice mentor teacher, program administrator, or program evaluator;

(c) A provision that apprentice mentor teachers are selected at the full discretion of the employer; and

(d) A requirement that a teacher apprentice works as a teacher of record for a minimum of one year.

(2) (a) The state board of education shall authorize qualified agencies with expertise in apprenticeship or in teacher preparation to serve as teacher apprenticeship program sponsors in partnership with employer partners, including any school districts, BOCES, charter schools, nonpublic schools, or institutes. The department shall determine the number of new agencies eligible to receive authorization.

(b) An entity that wishes to serve as a teacher apprenticeship program sponsor shall notify the state department of education and submit an application that, at a minimum, documents the entity's expertise with apprenticeship or with teacher preparation.

(c) Within thirty days after an entity submits a complete application to the state department of education, the state board of education shall notify the entity that the state board of education has either approved or disapproved the sponsorship application.

(3) (a) In addition to submitting an application to be approved as a teacher apprenticeship program sponsor, the entity shall submit an application for the sponsor's teacher degree apprenticeship program to the state board of education for approval. The application for the teacher degree apprenticeship program must include a work process schedule and related instruction plan as set forth by the United States department of labor or a state apprenticeship agency.

(b) The state department of education shall review applications for the teacher degree apprenticeship program and shall make recommendations to the state board of education for approval or denial of the applications.

(c) Within ninety days after a teacher apprenticeship program sponsor submits a complete application to the state department of education, the state board of education shall notify the teacher apprenticeship program sponsor that the state board of education has either approved or denied the application for the teacher degree apprenticeship program. If the application is denied, the state board of education shall cite the reasons for the denial.

(4) An approved teacher degree apprenticeship program must meet the following criteria:

(a) Be registered with the United States department of labor's office of apprenticeship or state apprenticeship agency;

(b) Include a plan for training and supporting apprentice mentor teachers;

(c) Include a wage scale commensurate with existing pay scales of local education providers based on the level of work being performed;

(d) The approved teacher degree apprenticeship program incorporates a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution in a related field of study relative to the endorsement area that the program's participants will pursue. The bachelor's degree program does not need to be an approved educator preparation program pursuant to section 23-1-121.

(e) The bachelor's degree program referenced in subsection (4)(d) of this section must incorporate on-the-job training in meaningful and time-saving ways through one of the following mechanisms:

(I) Offering thirty or more credits for successfully completing on-the-job training;

(II) Creating a residency model that closely integrates course work and clinical experience with relevant and connected assignments carried out in the clinical experience that counts as twenty-five percent or more toward the degree;

(III) Embedding on-the-job learning into the homework or assignment requirements of twenty-five percent or more of the courses within the degree; or

(IV) Operating as a competency-based bachelor's degree program.

(5) (a) Every five years after program approval, the state department of education shall consult with the United States department of labor's apprenticeship office, or state apprenticeship agency representatives, regarding the audit required pursuant to 29 CFR 29.3 to review program compliance and audit findings to ensure the approved teacher degree apprenticeship program continues to meet the requirements. An approved teacher degree apprenticeship program that does not meet the requirements is subject to disqualification by the state department of education.

(b) If disqualified, the teacher apprenticeship program sponsor may continue to operate the teacher degree apprenticeship program only as long as necessary to allow the actively registered apprentices to finish.

(c) If the teacher apprenticeship program sponsor redesigns the teacher degree apprenticeship program to meet the requirements, and the state board of education approves the redesigned teacher degree apprenticeship program, the teacher apprenticeship program sponsor may reinstate apprenticeship authorization, provided the teacher apprenticeship program sponsor meets the requirements for approval.

(6) The state department of education shall annually include data on teacher degree apprenticeship programs in the existing educator preparation program report dashboard, consistent with the data and reporting requirements in section 22-2-112 (1)(q). The department shall coordinate with the United States department of labor's office of apprenticeship or the state apprenticeship agency to source the data.

History

Source: L. 2023: Entire section added, (SB 23-087), ch. 184, p. 899, 4, effective August 7.

Annotations

Cross references: For the legislative declaration in SB 23-087, see section 1 of chapter 184, Session Laws of Colorado 2023.