The University of Northern Iowa offers a "literacy/reading minor" with endorsements for teaching K-8 as part of its Elementary Education degree.
Most public schools won't even consider a job candidate unless they have a literacy minor.
What's infuriating is that the literacy minor is worthless. It is nothing but taking a few extra "advanced" children's lit courses which amount to learning how to "read multiculturally". This is a euphamism for finding threadbare explanations for how rascism or classism can be found in (insert popular children's literature).
In the classes where we are supposed to learn how to "teach" reading, we're fed a program that consists of whole-language learning disguised in the rhetoric of "balanced-literacy". The funny thing is that none of the professors ever use the phrase "balanced-literacy".
Phonics isn't present anywhere in these teacher-ed programs other than extremely brief lip service paid to it in "Methods of Early Literacy" classes. There is no information on how to effectively implement a phonics program for struggling readers (much less all students).
As a 30 year old 2nd BA student who has returned to college to obtain a teaching degree/licensure I am disappointed by the lack of any real education that I'm receiving in my teacher-ed program. It's too much theory and pedagogy and not enough "here's what to teach and the best to teach it".
It has gotten to the point that I am simply going through the motions to get through the classes required for my degree and licensure. I don't expect to learn anything at all in my ed classes and instead spend time outside of class educating myself on how to be a teacher (by pouring through various phonics programs and other instructional methods).
It is sad that what used to be called "Iowa State Teachers College" is no longer turning out anything resembling a teacher.
It has gotten to the point that I am simply going through the motions to get through the classes required for my degree and licensure. I don't expect to learn anything at all in my ed classes and instead spend time outside of class education myself on how to be a teacher (by pouring through various phonics programs and other instructional methods).
It's been the same for me. Even when I got my elementary teaching credential, some 20 years ago, the classes were "mickey mouse." When I recently got my reading endorsement, I was disgusted at having to pay to "learn" useless information. I refuse to drink the cool aid. Like you, I spent, and spend, a lot of time on my own learning how to teach effectively, especially how to teach reading to struggling students.
The NCTQ report on ed schools and the science of reading is here. (pdf file)