EDUCATIONAL BARNSTORMER Wendy S. Kopp is about to unveil a project that's bound to rile teachers' unions. Five years ago, fresh out of Princeton University, she founded the Peace Corps-like Teach For America, which recruits new BAs to teach in public schools for a few years without conventional teacher training. The new project, Teach!, aims to recruit and train teachers on a larger scale. The nonprofit program will seek recruits aged 25 and up who intend to teach as a career. For each teacher trained and placed, Teach! will charge about $8,000--half from the teacher and half from the school district. Teach For America is funded by grants.
The American Federation of Teachers worries Kopp's legions will be underprepared, with just five weeks of pre-job training. "People think teaching is an easy job. It's not," a spokeswoman says. Kopp says Teach! will also give its recruits on-the-job training--and will reach bright people who otherwise wouldn't consider a teaching career.