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Minnesota House could make becoming a teacher in the state easier

MOORHEAD-The Minnesota House is considering a change to make it easier for some people to become teachers in the state.Gail Coplin says this could help the state's teacher shortage.The former teacher says the current requirements made it impossib...

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MOORHEAD-The Minnesota House is considering a change to make it easier for some people to become teachers in the state.

Gail Coplin says this could help the state's teacher shortage.

The former teacher says the current requirements made it impossible for her to continue her mission in the classroom.

She has a binder that holds over 30 years of degree licenses and recommendations.

It's a footprint of all the experiences Coplin says should have gotten her into the classroom.

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"In Minnesota, it didn't seem to matter to them," she said.

She couldn't even get a long-term substitute position in Minnesota because she didn't have the right qualifications.

"When I could no longer teach, that really hurt. I really missed it," said Coplin.

Even her doctorate degree in education from the University of Southern California was meaningless .

"It's worthless on the job market, apparently, but it's not worthless to me because I learned a tremendous amount," she said.

Coplin says she never got a straight answer on the exact 'why' but was told she didn't complete the right courses and would have to go back to school.

According to state representatives, it's a problem that needs to be resolved..

"There's just a lot of hoops and a lot of obstacles and a teaching license," said Rep. Paul Marquart of Dilworth.

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The solution? The House Education Finance bill allowing greater flexibility for teachers who are qualified.

"We need to make sure that we're not discouraging people that we know would be very good teachers that right now are not getting into the classroom," Marquart said.

These strict requirements making Coplin's degrees gather dust outside of the classroom.

"I gave it my best effort," said Coplin.

Marquart says he hopes the bill will go through.

Related Topics: EDUCATION
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