GRAND MEADOW, Minn. - Schools across the nation are continuing to see a shortage of teachers and Grand Meadows High School is doing something about it.
The school is offering and Introduction to Education course where high school students are the teachers. Principal Jake Schwarz and course teacher Jodi Munson tell KIMT they've had fewer teacher applicants in recent years and hope this class can help retain some talent in Grand Meadow.
The benefits of the class for students seem almost endless. Students get real-life teaching experience and learn how to handle kids and prepare lesson plans. The class also gives them 3 college credits before they graduate high school.
High school senior Elizabeth Jacobsen said a career in education is an option for her and this class is helping her figure it out before she invests time and money.
"Basically getting the teaching experience without having all the responsibility and getting thrown into it," she said. "Some kids in college don't get into a classroom until their third year of college so if they decide that's not what they want they're out two years of college."
While not all the students in the course are sold on a career in education just yet, they agree the class is giving them a new appreciation for all that teachers do.
"They put in a lot of time behind the scenes that no one really sees," Jacobsen said.
"I, like, have a whole new respect for teachers and how they get prepared every day and every night, just working so hard to get prepared for the next day for the students," Ethan Gilbert, high school junior, said.
The hands-on class is made possible through a grant by Southwest Minnesota State University. The school applied for and received a grant that funds the course.