Parkland College and Education for Employment #330 have partnered on a way to help fill the gap in the district's Pre K–12 teacher shortage.
The new Early College and Career Academy Education Pathway, which starts in the fall, will provide early training for area high school seniors who know teaching and working with young people is their calling, according to EFE #330 Director Nick Elder.
"It will also provide an opportunity for students who are undecided about their career path to gain some experience and decide if education is a fit for them," he said. "This program is being jointly developed by Parkland and our local school districts, a great example of secondary and post-secondary collaboration to ultimately provide a seamless transition into a high-need career area for our students."
The new pathway will feature four courses high school students can take:
Introduction to Education (EDU 101)
Educational Psychology (PSY 220)
Introduction to Special Education (EDU 104)
Introduction to Child Psychology (PSY 207)
The program includes a practical experience assisting in local school district classrooms, jointly developed by Parkland College and the student's high school. Interested students should check with their counselor for school-specific program prerequisites.
Launched in November 2014, the Early College and Career Academy is a collaboration of the EFE #330 K-12 career and technical education cooperative and Parkland College. At the academy, high school juniors and seniors earn dual credit for courses in certain skill-based programs: Automotive, Collision Repair, Computer Networking, Computer Programming, Criminal Justice, Emergency Medical Services (Health Professions or Fire Service focus), Certified Nursing Assistant, Industrial Technology, and now, Education Pathway. Many of the ECCA classes take place in the Parkhill Applied Technology Center on the far northwest side of campus. The academy benefits not only area students, but also local businesses, due to the increased skill level of the incoming workforce.
For more information on the new ECCA pathway, please email Elder at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 217/355-1382. The ECCA office at Parkland College is Room A113.