Taxpayers’ Investment at Risk: Is Troops-to-Teachers Program Effective?

A program that was supposed to help schools fill their teacher vacancies has been experiencing a crisis. According to a report released by the USGA, the program is not achieving its goals.

When the program was canceled in 2020, the Defense Department lost access to the data collected from participants. They also didn't use the data from the reports as they were supposed to. Furthermore, they haven't been working with the Education Department on the project as they were supposed to.

In 1992, a program called the Troops-to-teachers was launched, which provided grants to schools to encourage military personnel to become teachers. It also offered various incentives, such as a $5,000 bonus for every year of service.

Since 2017, most of the program's participants haven't been receiving the bonuses they were promised. It's because they were mistakenly categorized as eligible for Post-9/11 GI Bill educational benefits.

The program's participation has also been declining over the years. In 2020, the number of people participating in the program dropped by over 70%. A report attributed the decline to various factors, such as the changes in how it recruited and managed its participants. It's believed that the Defense Department was responsible for the program's lackluster performance.

After realizing its mistake, the Defense Department reinstated the program in December 2021. Unfortunately, Congress didn't allocate the required funds for the program. This left the Department of Defense with no choice but to implement its own plan to address the issue.

Despite the amount of money that the government gave to the program, it still has a lot of questions about its effectiveness. According to a report, the Defense Department has a hard time assessing the effectiveness of the program due to the lack of data.

Written by Staff Reports

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