NACOGDOCHES, Texas — Stephen F. Austin State University’s James I. Perkins College of Education has partnered with the Nacogdoches Independent School District to staff up to eight paid internships during the 2022-23 academic year.
The program, which launches this fall, will let students use clinical teaching assignments to gain valuable classroom experience before entering the education workforce.
Implementation of the new program is meant to ensure that the educational field is keeping pace with others, said Gabriel Trujillo, NISD superintendent.
“Paid internships are common in other fields, and this is one more way we can make public education more competitive with other professional endeavors,” he added. “We already have an extensive and successful relationship with SFA, so it only makes sense to work closely with the college.”
The paid internship program at NISD is similar to those recently established with Huntington Independent School District and Lufkin Independent School District.
Eight SFA students will be selected by NISD principals and will be paid as paraprofessionals, prorated over a 90-day period. The first group beginning work this fall will start in early August, when new teachers report to the district for professional development.
The first day of classes for NISD students is Aug. 22. Student teachers hired for the clinical teaching positions will remain with the district through Dec. 16 when NISD enters Christmas break.
Competition for the eight paid slots, which could turn into full-time positions after students graduate, is expected to be fierce as NISD typically has 20 to 25 clinical teachers on its campuses each semester.