Rural teacher education is an important focus of UBC’s BEd program with a 25-year teacher education program in the West Kootenays (WKTEP) and its rural community field experience.
WKTEP’s focus on place-based learning, a connection to community and sustainability prepares educators to teach in rural and remote BC communities. Each year, between 25 and 30 teacher candidates complete this program in the districts of Castlegar, Nelson, Arrow Lakes, Trail, Grand Forks and Kettle Valley. Many are hired in those districts or in other rural and remote communities.
“The WKTEP program has been great! It has been so valuable to work with currently practising teachers in a rural setting, and the cohort format helped me feel valued and appreciated. I have formed relationships that will last a lifetime!”
At UBC-Vancouver, interest in rural community field experiences (CFE) has exploded in the past two years with 40% of teacher candidates signing up to spend their CFE in one of six rural BC districts, including Cariboo-Chilcotin, Haida Gwaii, Peace River North, Prince Rupert, Vancouver Island West and now Nechako Lakes.
“I learned that I have a passion for teaching students in an outdoor setting and I gained several valuable hard skills that will hopefully assist me in one day constructing an outdoor classroom for future students.”