Global Effort to Recruit Teachers Expands

Friday, September 23, 2011

Teach for All, an international network of educational nonprofit groups modeled on Teach for America, has grown rapidly since its founding four years ago and now has some 1,500 teachers heading classrooms in more than a dozen countries, with recruiting under way in many more, the group?s founder, Wendy Kopp, said on Wednesday.

The network grew out of conversations between Ms. Kopp, who started Teach for America in 1990 to recruit recent college graduates for two years of teaching in low-income schools, and Brett Wigdortz, the founder of Teach First, a similar British organization. They founded the international version with help from McKinsey & Company, the consulting business.

?There is a universal power, it seems, in channeling any country?s most promising talents and future minds onto such a universally fundamental issue ? educational inequality and equity,? Ms. Kopp said in an interview. ?It?s amazing to see the caliber of people drawn to this. To find myself in Germany or Brazil or Peru, talking to these recruits, it?s impressive to see.?

Bill Clinton and former Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain announced Teach for All?s founding at the 2007 meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative, but the group has gotten little media attention. On Thursday, Ms. Kopp is to review the network?s growth in a speech at this year?s New York meeting of the Clinton initiative.

The countries in the program, which has a two-year commitment similar to Teach for America?s and a similar focus on needy schools, are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, China, Colombia, Estonia, Germany, India, Israel, Latvia, Lebanon, Malaysia, Pakistan, Peru and Spain. Ms. Kopp said local social entrepreneurs in many other nations were working to recruit teachers.

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