Over in North Carolina

Budget cuts kill a popular program that aids prospective teachers. This is bound to hurt enrollment in colleges of education in the universities.  From The NewsObserver.com.

Praised teacher program gets ax
For the past quarter of a century, North Carolina has offered a great deal to thousands of its brightest high school students: a free ride in college in exchange for teaching four years in Tar Heel classrooms.

As a result of the N.C. Teaching Fellows Program, a cadre of teachers and principals who graduated from the model program now work in 99 counties across the state.

"It's easy to spot them," said Brian Whitson, 35, a chemistry teacher at Salisbury High School, who was a Teaching Fellow. "You see a lot of innovation. A lot of them are able to motivate students in a way other teachers are not."

But that particular teacher pipeline is about to dry up.

The Teaching Fellows Program fell victim to the budget ax. As the legislature sought to deal with a $2.5 billion budget shortfall, it decided to phase out the $13.5 million annual funding for the program. This year's entering college freshman class will be the last to receive scholarships - though two Republican lawmakers suggested funding could be reinstated in future sessions.

The Teaching Fellows Program is one of a number of teacher programs that the legislature, which adjourned Thursday, decided to eliminate, phase out, or drastically cut.

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