Texas State University-San Marcos
Between 2012-2015, 60 AmeriCorps members will leverage 10,000 preservice teacher volunteers in service-learning activities with and for persons with disabilities throughout Florida and Texas. Twenty (20) AmeriCorps members each year will link local teacher training programs with their host non-profits (i.e., United Cerebral Palsy, Easter Seals). Preservice teachers will enroll in high-tech, high-touch service-learning e-modules based on a successful model created for "Teachers in Action" Learn & Serve America. Sample materials for the existing Teachers in Action project can be found online at https://sites.google.com/site/ucfteachersinaction/ The proposed project will be scaled up using AmeriCorps members to become a national model for connecting preservice teachers to nonprofits serving persons with disabilities. An estimated 25,000 persons with disabilities and their families will attend the programs or volunteer in service projects alongside the preservice teachers. This project will address the CNCS focus area of Education. The partnership will not only increase preservice teachers' understanding of special populations and sense of civic responsibility, but will provide a trained sustainable volunteer workforce who will deliver continuous, interactive, and developmentally-appropriate social, educational, and physical programming to persons with disabilities. The three-year CNCS investment of approximately $1,825,000 ($607,000 each year) will be matched with $670,000 ($223,000 each year) between university partners and private in-kind donations (27% of requested amount).