PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – “It’s smaller than a nickel, but it’s worth more,” so began a lesson by Kelsey Koons in Loudoun County’s Hillside Elementary School. Koons gets kids’ attention and she’s only a high school senior.

Koons is part of an experiment to recruit and train the next generation of teachers even before they graduate.

With several hundred new teaching positions opening up in Loudoun County, Virginia, high achieving students who live in the community have been recruited to experience the teaching profession. Two hundred young people have participated in the program since its start in 2002.

Teacher Cadets are now in all 12 high schools in the county, inspired by 20 former Cadets who have come back as fulltime teachers.

With an estimated 46% of teachers quitting before five years nationally, making interruptions for kids, principals and parents and costing millions of dollars, the Cadet program, described in The Washington Post …”like a farm team for the Majors,” is a great model.

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