DENVER (CBS4) – There’s a new effort to get more new teachers in Colorado. On Wednesday two of the state’s biggest teacher residency programs announced they are joining forces.

Nationwide about half of all new teachers quit the profession within three years. Teacher residency programs try to keep their careers going. They provide a year of in-classroom training for aspiring teachers while they are still in college.

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Now the Boettcher Teacher Residency and the Stanley Teacher Prep Program have become one.

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“They both do incredible work, but they’re doing it separate, so their impact I think is less,” Tollgate Elementary School Principal Laurie Godwin said. “Coming together I think they’ll have a greater impact on teaching.”

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The residency programs say they have helped nearly double the teacher retention rate.