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Such a step would be a dramatic change for the teaching profession in the U.S., and backers of the proposal believe it would result in a better education for students.

“It’s time to do away with a common rite of passage into the teaching profession, whereby newly minted teachers are tossed the keys to their classrooms, expected to figure things out, and left to see if they and their students sink or swim. This is unfair to both students and their teachers, who care so much but who want and need to feel competent and confident to teach from their first day on the job,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten.