U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky visited the Joseph E. Hill Education Center on May 9 to present District 65 Superintendent Devon Horton and the CREATE 65 team with a $600,000 check to continue the district’s teacher residency program.
Schakowsky, a Senior Chief Deputy Whip and Chair of the Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee who represents Evanston in Congress, announced the funding as a result of her request for Community Project Funding.
In the wake of the pandemic, the district launched its first-ever teacher residency program with the first cohort of new teacher graduates later this month. CREATE 65 is an intensive one-year teacher preparation program that puts teacher residents in classrooms with students four days a week. They learn the craft of instruction under the guidance of an experienced District 65 educator while they are completing their Master’s level coursework at a partnering university (Northwestern University and National Louis University). After completion, educators are ready to teach immediately after graduating. The program began in 2021-2022 in three schools (Dr. Bessie Rhodes School of Global Studies, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Literary and Fine Arts School and the Joseph E. Hill Early Childhood Center).
The new funds will support the continuation of the program in the 2022-2023 school year and a new cohort of 15 future District 65 teachers.
“This is about training teachers for District 65 classrooms,” Horton said. “The program emphasizes equity and high-quality practices, and focuses on diversifying our workforce. We recognize the importance of representation and the talent we have across this community. This is a key strategy for reducing barriers to the profession, creating career opportunities and engaging in effective practices to meet students’ diverse learning needs.”
The funding, which Schakowsky announced this week, is intended for recipients in the 9th Congressional District as a result of the Omnibus Appropriations bill signed into law in March.
“Community Project Funding is a way for Members of Congress to direct federal dollars to local projects where they can meaningfully impact the local community,” Schakowsky said. “Evanston/Skokie District 65’s CREATE 65 program is one of those projects. By providing a residency program for aspiring educators, District 65 is bringing in talent to serve students in a community of need. I am ecstatic to see the program’s success in its first year, and I look forward to continued progress in the years ahead.”
The CREATE 65 program is now accepting applicants for the 2022-2023 cohort. More information is available at https://www.district65.net/create65.
Submitted by Evanston/Skokie School District 65