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Gov. Reynolds announced the launch of afirst-in-the-nationTeacher and Paraeducator Registered Apprenticeship Grant ProgramTuesdayduring her annual Condition of the State Address.

The grant programwillprovideopportunities forcurrenthigh school students toearn aparaeducatorcertificateandassociatesdegree and paraeducatorsto earn theirbachelor's degreeall while learning and working inthe classroom. The program will begin in the 2022-2023 school year.

"This is atransformationalopportunitythatputsourschools at the center of growing their future workforce," said Gov. Reynolds. "I can't think of a better place to recruit our futuregenerations ofteachers and paraeducators thaninour own classrooms.Through thisfirst-in-the-nationexperiencetoday,we'll beshapingour educators of tomorrow."

The Iowa Department of Education(DOE)and Iowa Workforce Development Agency (IWD)will use $9M in American Rescue PlanAct (ARPA)Elementary andSecondarySchoolEducationRelief (ESSERIII)funds to create the model program which will train and educate current high school students and paraeducators for the next step in theirteaching careers while they learn,work, and get paidin Iowa schools.

Through the grant program, school districts will be required to partner with local community colleges or four-year colleges/universitiesto provide therequirededucation and training.The DOEand IWDwill provide up to $40,500 over a three-year period for each high school student that completes the Paraeducator Certificate or Associates degree model. The DOE will provide up to $47,000 over a two-year period for each paraeducator thatcompletesthebachelor's degreemodel.Funding will support:

  • Tuition and fees up to $7,000/year for up to three years at a community college.

  • Tuition and fees up to $17,000/ year for up to two years at a public or private four-year college/university.

  • Hourly rate of $12 for high school aides while still in school and50% of wagesthat districts currently payfor aides and paraeducators for up to 30 hours per week for 36 weeks.

The grant application,deadlinesand further informationcan be foundhere.

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