“Encompass” Performs for BTSA Participants

Tina Cunningham, director of BTSA Consortium for Temple City and Duarte Unified, offers corrections to a previously published article on the program.

Written by SOPHIA CHANG / Published November 20, 2009

The Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment (BTSA) program held its monthly workshop last Tuesday, November 10.

Supporter providers and participating teachers attended a performance by Encompass, a theatrical group, of Horizon Line. Horizon Line is a play that helps teachers learn about ways to handle students’ biases and conflicts.

The BTSA is a two-year state-run program for teachers with preliminary teaching credentials.

In 1998, the Temple City Unified School District (TCUSD) implemented the BTSA program. Five years later, BTSA involved into today’s BTSA Induction program.

Tina Cunningham, director of the BTSA Consortium for Duarte Unified School District and TCUSD, joined the District in 2002.

Cunningham has previously praised the success of the BTSA Induction program, citing that 96 percent of teachers, who entered TCUSD in 2004 and participated in the BTSA program, are still teaching with the District.

For TCUSD, there are a total of 13 participating teachers and 9 support providers.

Besides a two-hour monthly meeting, both participating teachers and support providers meet a minimum of once a week. Cunningham reviews the credentials of potential candidates and contacts the chosen teacher-mentor.

The stipend of a support provider is approximately $1500 annually, along with a few benefits.

“BTSA is completely self-supporting,” states Cunningham in a September interview with the Voice. “It’s completely funded by the state.”

The BTSA program was created to address the issue of teachers quitting their jobs due to the classroom related stress. According to Cunningham, BTSA serves “as a means to offer support for new teachers.”

This news article updates and revises the previously published article, “District BTSA Program Begins a New Year.”

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