Enrollment continues to expand for Arizona program addressing teacher shortage

Aug 29, 2021, 6:15 AM
(Arizona Board of Regents Photo)...
(Arizona Board of Regents Photo)
(Arizona Board of Regents Photo)

PHOENIX — Enrollment at an Arizona college program created to address the state’s teacher shortage continues to rise with enrollment growth in 2021 increasing 22% year-over-year, according to a new report.

The Arizona Teachers Academy had 949 students earn degrees across 84 different academic programs in 2020-2021, a 17% growth in degrees earned year-over-year, according to the Arizona Board of Regents.

Through the academy, students are offered one year of tuition waived for each year they commit to teaching in Arizona public schools.

The Board of Regents is required by state law to prepare an annual report on the program. The 2021 report was released Thursday.

The board oversees the state’s three public universities, Rio Salado Community College, Scottsdale Community College and Pima Community College, each of which runs its own program in the academy launched by Gov. Doug Ducey in 2017.

Arizona State University had the lead with 1,190 enrollees and 46 students who graduated, the report said.

Northern Arizona University had 952 academy students in 2020-2021 and 298 completions.

The University of Arizona had 360 students and 142 completions.

Since the academy was created in 2017, 2,032 students have finished an academy program.

In addition to the legislatively allocated $15 million in 2021, Ducey granted the academy $6 million from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund. More funding from Proposition 207 provided another $15 million for the academy.

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Enrollment continues to expand for Arizona program addressing teacher shortage