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Troops to teachers: Marketing a source of qualified teachers

1 November 1996


The purpose of this research was to determine how the Troops to Teachers program is received by district and school administrators within the State of Oregon, and how the program is marketed to this target audience.

The research questions examined in this paper were centered on: (1) How the district or school administrators became aware of the Troops to Teachers program? (2) Did the information provided meet their needs or expectations? (3) Based on the information received, would they consider hiring a Troops to Teachers participant? (4) Would they accept participants who had obtained certification by either traditional or alternative methods? (5) How much influence would the supplemental salary funding exert in their hiring decision?

Subject groups for these research questions included several school districts throughout the State of Oregon, as well as some individual school administrators within Lane County, Oregon.

The study found that the Troops to Teachers program is almost unknown within the Oregon Education Community. One reason for this is the marketing methods used to promote the program within the State of Oregon. Another reason is the perception of State level educators regarding the "soft money" promised by federal programs. While these two issues have created a current lack of awareness regarding the Troops to Teachers program within Oregon, there are also problems at the state level which have contributed to this situation. The main problem is the lack of management direction within the State Department of Education. The majority of departments within the Oregon Department of Education appear to be so fragmented or compartmentalized that they are unaware of what each other are, or are not doing. This is compounded by the attitude of not wanting to accept or take responsibility for decisions which have or need to be made. This was a major contributor in the identification to DANTES of eligible school districts within Oregon in which the individual districts were unaware they had been classified as eligible for this program.


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