YES is unique in that universities, community colleges and local school districts are cooperating and collaborating rather than competing for a distinct population.

Why YES?

Enrollments in university teacher-preparation programs have fallen, some showing program enrollment declines of over 50% within 5 years.

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YES Strategies

Our organization strives to meet these challenges by various educational initiation, implementation and execution strategies.

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The YES Challenge

There is growing recognition that teachers who are effectively trained to serve in urban contexts require a specialized set of knowledge and skills.

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The Young Educators Society of Michigan (YES) was established in 1987 to encourage under-represented minority youth to consider the field of teaching as a career. Our nation is currently experiencing a severe decline of racial/ethnic minorities entering the teaching profession at a time when minority student enrollment in public education is increasing dramatically. Of racial/ethnic minority students entering higher education, a disproportionately low number are choosing to pursue degrees in the field of education; hence the establishment of YES.

YES is patterned after the Future Teachers Clubs of America that were quite successful in attracting young people into teaching in the 1950s and ’60s. The YES model is open to ALL school districts who are interested in promoting and increasing the diversity composition of our nation’s future teaching work force. YES primarily services students in grades 7-12, but is open to all students at all levels. YES is unique in that universities, community colleges, and local school districts are cooperating and collaborating rather than competing for a distinct population.

YES History

In early 1987, a small group of staff and administrators at Eastern Michigan University met to discuss growing concerns over sharp declines in the numbers of minority students pursuing careers in the teaching profession. They decided the most effective means of addressing this issue would be to organize teacher interest clubs in junior and senior high schools in districts where there were high minority populations.

On April 2, 1987, the Eastern Michigan group sent invitations to identified urban school districts with high minority enrollments. These invitations asked superintendents to send representatives to planning meetings to discuss the possibility of establishing teacher interest clubs in their secondary schools. This effort resulted in the hosting of the first meeting which would eventually form the nucleus of the Steering Committee for the Young Educators Society (YES).

Today, the Young Educators Society Executive Board is comprised of representatives from institutions of higher education, community colleges, and urban school districts across the state of Michigan who have maintained a commitment to the initial goals of the YES organization.