Center for Effective School Practices

Tue
21
Feb

Q&A With Governor Tom Kean

Governor Thomas Kean

Reflections on the 30-Year Success of the Alternative Route Teaching Program

Before this program “Einstein could not have taught math in New Jersey” on the K-12 level"

Just over 30 years ago, Governor Tom Kean proposed landmark education reform through the Alternative Route Certification Program, which radically changed existing teacher training and certification laws.  The legislation allowed those with a bachelor’s degree in key subject areas to shorten the route to teacher certification and eliminate many education course requirements. This program is now an integral part of not just the New Jersey teacher employment system, but also is employed in many states nationwide.

Kean, who was the state’s 48thGovernor and is known worldwide for his role as chairman of the 9/11 Commission, reflects on the success of the Alternative Route Certification Program.

How did you know that this idea and the resulting legislation would be so successful?

Tue
21
Feb

30 years later the Alternate Route Certification Program for Teachers is still a New Jersey Success Story

Governor Kean working with students

Thirty years ago, with little idea of what career path to choose, Mike Harris felt his life resembled a scene from the movie, The Graduate.

“I was Dustin Hoffman floating in the pool,” he said, referring to the iconic scene that is so relatable to many recent college graduates. After graduating from Kenyon College as a religion major, Harris considered applying to law school but only because he had no clear idea of what he wanted to do. He was working in the insurance industry, but was miserable there.  “I was thinking every day ‘if I stay in this job for too much longer, I’m going to die,” he recalls.

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