We have just been advised that every education class in the MAT program now requires at least 15 lab hours in a middle or high school classroom. Those graduating from a MAT program after July 2008 will be forced to have 300 lab hours. This is due to Georgia State Certification requirements.
The problem with this idea- which might sound good at first- is that students in the MAT program will either have to be independently financially stable, or will have to be employed as a teacher to accumulate all these lab hours and still make enough money to survive. The problem is exacerbated by some counties claiming they will not hire current MAT students*, creating a Catch-22: students need to be teachers to get all the lab hours in, but will not be hired in some counties because they haven't finished the program yet. This is but another bureaucratic annoyance, in this case one that's a headache for the many students attempting to fill the vital need for teachers in this state.
*despite these students being able to work in schools according to GA law, if they have passed the GACE teacher cert