2/1/08 Today Governor Sonny Perdue announced enhancements to the Master Teacher Certification Program as another step towards improving student achievement in Georgia. As introduced in Governor Perdue’s 2005 Georgia Learns education package, The Master Teacher program recognizes teachers who demonstrate instructional excellence in K-12 classrooms.
“The Master Teacher Program bestows recognition on Georgia’s educators who clearly make a difference in students’ achievement,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “With a firm program foundation now in place, I believe it’s time to financially reward our expert teachers who mentor and coach their peers and play a vital role in creating a more educated Georgia.”
In the FY 2009 budget, Governor Perdue proposed that the state reward veteran teachers holding Master Teacher certification with an annual stipend of $500 for mentoring new teachers and $2,000 for serving as an academic coach. Governor Perdue also plans to give priority to certified Master Teachers when making appointments to the boards and commissions that govern Georgia's K-12 education agencies.
The Georgia Professional Standards Commission will implement new incentives to bolster the program. Master Teachers will automatically earn renewal of their teaching certificates as long as they maintain Master Teacher status through student achievement gains. And the Georgia Professional Standards Commission will host an annual conference to honor and provide leadership training to Georgia’s Master Teachers.
Modifications to the Master Teacher certification process will take effect immediately to support these programmatic changes:
-The application deadline for the current year will be extended from January 31, 2008 to March 7, 2008.
-The application process for 2nd-8th grade core academic teachers will be streamlined to take less than 20 minutes to complete; and
-Applicants will have to submit only two years of student achievement data rather than three to be considered for Master Teacher certification.
For more information on the Master Teacher Program, please visit http://www.gamasterteachers.org or send an email to MasterTeachers@gapsc.com.