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Santa Maria Bonita School District and Cal Lutheran launch new program for future teachers

ORCUTT, Calif.- The grant program will supply up to 25 teachers per year through a year long residency focused on early childhood, bilingual education, and multiple subjects.

It's thanks to a partnership grant that is creating a teacher residency program in Santa Maria schools.

The new teacher Residency Program in Santa Maria schools is a chance for more people to become teachers in the community.

“The grant program is actually going to help supply up to 25 teachers per year through a year long residency with early childhood bilingual and multiple subjects for elementary teaching," said Mike Hillis, Cal Lutheran University, Dean Graduate School of Education.

The goal is to help with the teacher shortage happening across the state.

“Because all of these folks are coming from the community, they're much more likely to stay within the community and teach. So they're really giving back to the community through this program. And then the other piece is that they know who it is that they're teaching. And so we think it's so important to have people from the community to be working in our schools," said Mike Hillis.

People in the program say it has been very helpful.

“I am very excited. I've been wanting to teach for a very long time. I'm currently a substitute. I'm just not a credentialed teacher. And Santa Maria Bonita School District has been my home and where I love teaching our children," said Cythia Cook, Santa Maria Bonita School District, Bilingual/Bicultural Instruction Aid.

Cal Lutheran believe the new program serves as a long term solution for Santa Maria. And they hope the program will continue for many years to come.

Article Topic Follows: Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County
Cal Lutheran University
Santa Barbara
Santa Maria-Bonita School District

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Tony Almanza


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