Professional Advancement Network for Teacher Assistants (PANTA)

The ultimate goal for PANTA was quite simply to increase the pool of qualified applicants for Meridian Public School District and Lauderdale County School District. Strategies for achieving this goal included the following:
1. Offer classes in the evening when teacher assistants can attend
2. Provide a flexible classroom delivery model to allow for work and professional development responsibilities
3. Provide flexible field experience opportunities to coincide with work requirements

Please call 601-484-0153 if you are interested in speaking with someone about the PANTA program.

Impact

The PANTA initiative is changing the face of elementary education in Meridian and Lauderdale County schools. Teacher assistants with years of
experience in the classroom are now able to earn their degree in a high quality elementary education degree program and become licensed teachers.
These future teachers live in this community and plan to stay in this community. This greatly increases the number of highly qualified K-8 teachers for
both of our partner school districts, which impacts the elementary students in our community. In addition, the "traditional" MSU students are able to hear from these teacher assistants in classroom discussions, which adds a depth that only experience in the K-12 setting can bring. They are networking with each other and learning from each other.