KILLEEN, Texas — According to the National Education Association, nearly 50 percent of new teachers leave their profession within the first five years.
It's a statistic that Texas A&M-Central Texas is trying to help lower by providing mentors to first-year teachers in our communities.
Senior Alonso Cano is one of many students who aspire to inspire the lives of children in Central Texas. He sees the impact COVID-19 has had on teachers across Texas and strives to "graduate and find a way into the system and help them out."
It's a task that doesn't come easy for first-year teachers who are still trying to figure out their way around the classroom.
"The first year is going to be tough, but when you get past the first year it is going to be way easier," Cano said.
Texas A&M-Central Texas is working to provide new teachers with mentors to help with their transition. It's a guide that has helped other teachers sustain their career for decades.
Harker Heights educator Christina Bennett, a teacher for 20 years, said the key to surviving the first year is to "support each other and make sure you are close to your team."