North Harrison Community Schools Adopts Innovative Career Advancement Program for Teachers to Earn Master’s Degrees

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The on-the-job program, offered by BloomBoard and its university partner network, offers 18 teachers the opportunity to gain essential skills while teaching in the classroom

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“Growing and advancing our staff while keeping them teaching supports our school community’s commitment to excellence. This program is a powerful and valuable way to make education a benefit of employment at North Harrison,” said Nathan Freed, Superintendent of North Harrison Community Schools.

North Harrison Community Schools today announces a partnership with BloomBoard to make educator retention and advancement a district priority, ensuring its place as a school district of choice for educators. Through this program, teachers can earn an accredited Master’s Degree of Curriculum and Instruction from a university partner of BloomBoard. This partnership with the district offers professional skill building and employment incentives to advance teaching talent.

North Harrison Community Schools will cover half of the associated costs with participation for up to 18 staff members. In return, participants agree to continue teaching in the school district for at least three years. The North Harrison Community School Board of Education approved the partnership with BloomBoard, and teachers have already begun coursework to earn credentials.

“Our teachers want the best practices and instructional strategies to share within their classroom, and BloomBoard’s model is set up to do just that,” said Nathan Freed, Superintendent of North Harrison Community Schools. “Growing and advancing our staff while keeping them teaching supports our school community’s commitment to excellence. This program is a powerful and valuable way to make education a benefit of employment at North Harrison.”

All 50 states have reported shortages in at least one subject area. In Indiana, there are an estimated 980 teacher vacancies. The U.S. has experienced recurring teacher shortages for decades—a condition the COVID-19 pandemic has only worsened. Teacher turnover has been shown to:

This program provides incentives that encourage current education staff to stay within the district while also attracting new teachers and staff:

  • $5,000 pay increase upon completion of the program
  • A low-cost alternative for completing a Master’s Degree
  • Teachers complete courses while working in the classroom
  • Ability to further retirement account savings through pay bump

The turnkey program includes a combination of online and on-the-job learning processes. Teachers receive faculty advising and participate in structured collaboration forums. They earn their degree credits by submitting portfolios of evidence from their own classroom practices to demonstrate their abilities. This learn-by-doing approach allows teachers to conduct their studies while teaching in the classroom, making their coursework immediately applicable and the degree earning process more efficient.

“BloomBoard is proud to partner with North Harrison Community Schools to assist with its efforts to honor teachers and support their advancement,” said Sanford Kenyon, CEO of BloomBoard. "This partnership provides teachers access to unique, on-the-job learning that allows them to show what they know in their classroom practice and earn a university degree at the same time, all financially supported by the district.”

North Harrison Community Schools is offering this program to staff in part by leveraging federal relief aid. Schools applying for federal funding must spend at least 20 percent of the funds to address learning loss through evidence-based interventions that respond to students’ academic, social and emotional needs.

On Feb 9th at 7 pm EST, teachers participating in the Master’s Degree program will be recognized in a brief ceremony and reception at North Harrison Middle School during the scheduled board meeting. For more on BloomBoard, visit http://www.bloomboard.com.

About North Harrison Community Schools
North Harrison Community School Corporation commits to provide differentiated curriculum and instruction to K-12 students identified as high ability, regardless of individual differences. We recognize some students possess, or are capable of possessing, extraordinary ability and/or talent and should be challenged to reach their utmost level of achievement consistent with their ability. NHCS recognizes the need to provide unique learning experiences to enhance the development of each student’s academic, social, and psychological needs to become productive citizens in an ever-changing world.

About BloomBoard
BloomBoard is a talent development provider that enables K-12 school districts to grow, advance and retain educators by making professional education a benefit of employment. We offer turn-key programs for school districts to move educators forward at all points of their professional journey. Our platform connects districts to higher education institutions that offer certification and degree programs using a unique, on-the-job instructional model. We help to assess needs, build and implement plans, and celebrate educator success.

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