TAFE program for students interested in educational careers

Doe Mai Na and Eh Bway Paw

The Texas Associate of Future Education or TAFE is a program that the school has recently adopted into their education program. This will be the schools first year running the program. The first official meeting for TAFE will be Wednesday, September 25. Meetings will be held once a month in Jill William’s room 174.

TAFE is a program aimed at students who plan to walk down the path of becoming an educator. The program will grant students the chance to experience firsthand what it’s like to be an educator and the components involved in teaching others. Students who are interested still have the opportunity to sign up for the program.

This program gives current students hands-on lessons which will benefit future educators with teachers they know and trust,” English teacher Cody Ames said.

Benefits such as going to conferences and obtaining scholarship opportunities are presented to students. Not only that, students are taught to be well equipped for their desired career path. 

This program informs students of the opportunities, ups, and downs of the teaching profession,” Ames said. “There are potential scholarships and networking opportunities which are useful.”

Not only is the program benefiting the student, it also helps the Dumas ISD by having the graduates coming back to teach at the schools.

“[T]he people that come back to Dumas, they know Dumas,” Principal Brett Beesley said. “They know our clientele, they know our culture and our history. Just what happens in this school [itself]. The little idiosyncrasies […]. They know it all already and they know what it’s about, so that’s who I want to come back.”

There have been several students who have taken to showing interest in the program and have also planned on joining. 

I want to join the program to further my skills in something that I will be doing in my future career,” junior Jonathon Maestas said. “I had a coach named Ryne Erickson, he made me believe in myself and he helped me find a passion for the sport. I felt that I owed him to become a coach/teacher to be as good as he was.”

If the program run successfully this year, the school will be offering students the two starting dual credit classes to create the foundation for their career.

“ If this year goes well, next year we’re going to teach the beginning two classes at AC [here],” Beesley said.

Afterwards, students will have the opportunity to go to AC to get their associate, then transfer to West Texas A&M University  for their last year.

“Texas Tech [is] kind of the pioneer in this [area], they have a [“]grow your own program[“]. It’s three years long,” Beesley said. “We’re trying to do it with AC because of quest, and then partner with WT to get that last year.”

No matter the outcome, Beesley said that the whole purpose of the program is to produce quality teachers.

“The benefit for me is hopefully getting those kids to come back, but I don’t care where they go, education needs the best and the brightest,” Beesley said. “So whether it’s Dumas or anywhere I want the best people we have in education.”

By exposing students to their passion or career path earlier on, they are better equipped for what they are going to face later on. 

Forewarned is forearmed,” Ames said.