The vast majority – 87 percent – of K-12 public school districts in Indiana are reporting a teacher shortage for the 2020/2021 school year. To combat the shortage, schools are turning to live streaming instruction to ensure students can continue to learn.
Elevate K-12, a live streaming instruction company, launched its services across the state of Indiana to combat the shortage crisis by connecting teachers seamlessly to students in Indiana. The initial launch of Elevate K-12 in Indiana was born out of a partnership with 21st Century Charter School in Gary, Ind.
Elevate K-12 says the use of live streamed instruction allows Indiana schools to offer academic courses that have never been offered before, including Computer Science, Cybersecurity, German, and American Sign Language, among others.
The company works with teachers across the country to teach remotely. Elevate K-12 says this allows teachers to set their own schedule, while also allowing schools to bring certified teachers for subjects they couldn’t otherwise offer due to lack of teachers in the zip code.
Elevate K-12 is also working with colleges to help education students get the student teaching experience they need to graduate. The company has partnered with the University of Phoenix to take student teaching virtual.
Through the 12-week program, teaching students will be paired with a mentor teacher and will work for four hours each day. During the second half of the program, the student teacher will take over the teaching and will be observed and coached by the mentor teacher, who will be in the classroom for the duration of the student teacher’s teaching.
“On average, the University of Phoenix places around 800 student teachers per semester, and in addition, they have thousands more who are earning their undergraduate and master’s degree in education,” Elevate K-12 Chief Operating Officer Kim Kross said. “The requirements for achieving those degrees is to complete a number of observation hours and to accumulate hours of student teaching. With COVID-19, that has been increasingly difficult, and schools don’t know how to accommodate that in a remote environment. That is where we come in.”