MCC Offers New Alternative Certification Program for Teachers

(Bradenton, Fla., July 20, 2005) - Manatee Community College (MCC) is offering a new program for noneducation majors with at least a bachelor's degree that will prepare them for professional state certification as K-12 teachers. The Florida Legislature authorized the creation of Alternative Certification Programs (ACP) in an attempt to address the state's critical teacher shortage in a manner that assures quality teachers. MCC's initial program will address middle and secondary school certification only.

MCC worked with other community colleges to develop its ACP in anticipation of formal Department of Education approval this summer. Participants are now being recruited and instruction will begin in late September 2005 at MCC Lakewood Ranch, 7131 Professional Parkway East, Sarasota.

The competency-based program will include coursework, field experiences, test preparation sessions, mentoring and Web-based elements. Instructors will have at least a master's degree as well as K-12 teaching experience.

Evening and weekend scheduling will allow professionals to continue working while pursuing a new career goal of teaching. To complete MCC's ACP, participants must successfully finish all courses in the program and pass three state exams. The cost of the ACP is based on current MCC tuition rates and is expected to be around $2,000 for Florida residents. The cost for out-of-state students is based on regular non-Florida resident tuition rates of $245.05 per credit hour. 

MCC's goal is to have three cohorts of 25 students each complete the program and be prepared to enter the classroom within two years. While completion of the program does not guarantee job placement, MCC is coordinating with area school districts to ensure participants are prepared to teach in subject areas that match local districts' biggest needs.

Advantages of MCC's program are that it will provide knowledge and teaching skills prior to entry into a classroom; will provide preparation support for state exams; and is open to a wide range of qualified participants.

To learn more, interested persons may call (941) 752-5330; e-mail; look for an online application form at; or access Frequently Asked Questions at


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