State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, as his first official act as Acting Governor of California, issued a proclamation on Tuesday declaring “Change Lives – Be a Teacher Day.”
While Gov. Jerry Brown, Liet. Gov. Gavin Newsom and most of the other statewide constitutional office holders are currently in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention, the State Constitution and the Government Code require the State Superintendent of Public Instruction serve as Acting Gov. when regular statewide office holders are absent, the state Dept. of Education said in a press release.
Torlakson assumed duties as Acting Gov. on Monday and will serve until Thursday July 28 when Gov. Brown returns.
The proclamation is as follows:
“Are you a talented, passionate, dedicated, and high-quality person who wants to make a profound difference in the lives of young people and your community? California needs you.
California needs you to consider becoming a teacher.
Teachers play a pivotal role in helping young people get excited about learning and reaching success in 21st century careers and college.
But California has a teacher shortage. School districts, with an influx of new funding, are looking to lower student-teacher ratios and reinstate classes and programs that were reduced or eliminated during the lean budget years of the Great Recession.
The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing last year issued 15,000 credentials but projected a need for 7,000 more. In mid-October of 2015, two months after the school year started, the statewide educator job portal EdJoin still listed nearly 4,000 open teaching positions—double the number listed at that time in 2013.
Enrollment in California’s teacher preparation programs has declined significantly in the last eight years.
Specialized credentials are in high demand. In mathematics and science, the number of preliminary credentials awarded to new, fully-prepared teachers dropped by 32 percent and 14 percent, respectively, over the last four years. In special education, the number of credentials issued dropped by 21 percent.
We want students from your communities and from your schools to learn how rewarding it is to be a teacher. Most of those students will return to their communities and serve as role models.
Teaching isn’t just a job. It isn’t just a career. It’s a calling. It’s a commitment to your community, your students, and most of all, a commitment to the future.
You can learn more about becoming a teacher at www.teachcalifornia.org.
Whether you are a student, a para-educator, or a career changer, please consider becoming a teacher. Make the difference of a lifetime.
Now Therefore I, Tom Torlakson, Acting Governor of the State of California, do hereby proclaim July 26, 2016, as “Change Lives – Be a Teacher Day.”