Alternative teaching certification process eyed for Chamorro, Carolinian teachers

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The Language Policy Commission will implement a proficiency exam as an alternative certification process in order to fill bilingual instructor positions in the Public School System.

On Monday, the principal executives of the Office of Indigenous Affairs, the Office of Carolinian Affairs, and the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs signed a memorandum of agreement acknowledging the alternative certification process in hiring bilingual instructors for PSS.

Since 2011, the number of bilingual instructors in the CNMI has been dwindling.

From 60 instructors in 2011, that number has dropped to nearly only 30 bilingual instructors, including Rota and Tinian.

The MOA signed by OIA resident executive Roman Tudela, OCA executive assistant John Tagabuel, and DCCA Secretary Robert Hunter states that they agree that an alternative route should be taken to address the shortage of bilingual instructors because the current prerequisites to certify an instructor—a passing score in Praxis 1 and in Praxis 2, and 24 credits from an accredited college—cannot be met by many proficient Chamorro and Carolinian instructors.

The alternative certification process only requires at least an associate degree and a passing score in a Chamorro and Carolinian proficiency exam.

The Public School System has yet to accept the alternative certification process.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.

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