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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Mary Frances Clardy (DFL)

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Release: Bill to Strengthen Recruitment & Retention of Teachers of Colors Advances to Higher Ed Committee

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

St. Paul, MN - Today, legislation to get more teachers of color in Minnesota’s classrooms advanced out of the Education Finance Committee. Rep. Mary Frances Clardy (DFL-Inver Grove Heights), vice chair of the House Education Finance Committee and a public-school teacher of over 28 years is authoring the bill. 

“This comprehensive proposal will close opportunity gaps, increase investments into impactful, data-backed programming, and help more kids in Minnesota see themselves represented in the classroom,” said Rep. Clardy. “High demand and interest in these support programs have exceeded the allocated funding we provided in 2023, and with my bill, we’re keeping our commitment to students to make our schools more diverse and inclusive.”

Rep. Clardy’s bill would increase funding by $10 million to make more scholarships available to teacher candidates from underrepresented racial or ethnic backgrounds, as a part of the Aspiring Teachers of Color Scholarship Pilot Program, which was enacted by the 2021 legislature. It would also invest $1 million to support higher education programs at institutions that recruit and support teacher candidates of color, including via scholarships and student teaching stipends. Additionally, the legislation also would provide a $5 million investment to the Mentoring, Induction and Retention Incentive Program grants for teachers of color.

HF 4500 advanced out of the committee on a voice vote and now goes to the House Higher Education Finance and Policy Committee.