New teaching candidates are pictured at USM’s Lewiston-Auburn College. The four students in the Collaborative Learning And School Success teacher education program have achieved candidacy status and are working with mentor teachers in the program’s partner schools. From left are Kathy Brooks, Kenneth Mashke, Sheena Roy and William Murray.

Future teachers earn candidacy status

LEWISTON – The CLASS (Collaborative Learning And School Success) professional teacher program at the University of Southern Maine’s Lewiston-Auburn College has announced the achievement of candidacy status for four of its students.

Kathy Brooks, Kenneth Mashke, Sheena Roy and William Murray have completed scholarly and practicum work in the elementary education field, attaining proficiency in child development, content knowledge, technology, diversity, educational philosophy and professionalism. The students will continue to study and research the elementary education field at the graduate level.

Dr. Paul G. Caron, assistant professor of CLASS: Mathematics and Science, said that during candidacy the students work with mentor teachers at two professional development partner schools in Auburn: Sherwood Heights Elementary School and Auburn Middle School.

“Based on the concept of simultaneous renewal, both the mentor teachers and candidates collaborate to create and apply learning curricula and practices based on current research,” said Caron. He added, “They share their knowledge and talents in creating effective learning environments benefiting all students.”

In addition to attending regular classes for their academic major, the CLASS candidates spend one and a half days a week at one of the partner schools, and devote at least four to five hours of the time with students in the classroom.

The candidates are beginning the process of making connections between what they’ve learned and what they see in the classroom. Achieving candidacy status gives the students more time to practice the theories they’ve researched and studied.

Upon completion of the candidacy period of the CLASS program, the students work as teaching interns for a full year under the guidance of mentors. Students then graduate with a Bachelors degree in a content area, an elementary education certificate and more than 30 graduate credits.

Anyone interested in the program is encouraged to call 753-6618 for more information or visit the Web site at

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