The School District of Manatee County and New College of Florida announced a partnership on Monday to provide NCF students a “Pathway to Become Teachers.”

The partnership allows NCF students who are interested in the field of education to apply for an internship inside a Manatee District classroom, gaining mentorship and access to first-person experience to live instruction.

This important initiative allows post-secondary students to explore careers with the potential for employment upon graduation.

NCF hosted the joint press conference at Cook Hall, a historic mansion on Sarasota Bay built for Hester Ringling, daughter of Charles from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus fame.

A similar program was established by the school district and University of South Florida previously. In Spring 2023, 10 USF graduates signed contracts to teach in Manatee County schools.    

It’s a win-win for the school district and college to offer local graduates a way to pursue a profession where starting pay begins at more than $57,000.

NCF President Richard Corcoran noted the average starting salary of a Manatee County teacher is amongst the highest in the state, thanks in part to the passage of a millage referendum.

Other speakers included Superintendent Jason Wysong and Kelly Smith-Williams, Manatee County’s 2023 Teacher of the Year.

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