Participants go through a 15-month course that would have them licensed as teachers by fall 2023. The application can be found at goldenapple.org/accelerators.
McLean County Unit 5 has one participant in the accelerator program doing his placement this year, Golden Apple said in an email to The Pantagraph. Both Illinois State and Illinois Wesleyan universities have students in the program, which provides financial and other support for students who commit to teaching at designated in-need schools in the state.
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The program is aimed at training people with existing careers to become teachers, to help address the teacher shortage in Illinois. Accelerators agree to work for four years in a school of need after finishing the program. The placements are focused on downstate Illinois.
The program includes placements at local schools along with coursework at a partner university. Participants take courses while doing placements and over the summer. Those coming from other careers need to hold a bachelor’s degree already.
The partner universities for the accelerators program are Eastern Illinois University and Blackburn College.
High school students graduating in 2022, Illinois community college students and freshman and sophomores at participating schools can apply for the Scholars program. Participating colleges and universities include ISU, IWU, Eureka College Millikin University and EIU.
Visit goldenapple.org for more information.
Correction: An earlier version of this article had incorrect attribution for local participants. This version has been updated.
Contact Connor Wood at (309)820-3240. Follow Connor on Twitter: @connorkwood