April 4, 2023 — On March 16, the Washington Education Association (WEA) received final approval from the Professional Educator Standards Board to launch its teacher residency program! In doing so, WEA is the first National Education Association (NEA) affiliate to become an approved educator-preparation program. In its founding year (2023-24), the WEA Teacher Residency will partner with the Federal Way School District/Federal Way Education Association, Mukilteo School District/Mukilteo Education Association, and the Walla Walla Public Schools/Walla Walla Valley Education Association to establish cohorts of residents learning how to become outstanding special education teachers.
The National Center for Teacher Residencies (NCTR) has collaboratively worked with WEA over the past year to support their creation and launch of their new teacher residency program that is focused on preparing outstanding special educators. In this unique and promising model, WEA will be the Educator Preparation Provider (EPP) and has built its program with a design team of exceptional teachers who have shaped its curriculum and clinical experiences. This residency is authentically and purposefully designed by teachers, for teachers, and we’ve been privileged to watch their thoughtful and communal work take shape.
This residency would not have been possible without all of the years of service WEA has provided across the state. Those experiences and the relationships that have been built in them have positioned WEA for a strong launch of their teacher residency, and we can not wait to see it up and running next year!