District Grows its Own Teachers
O'FALLON (AP) - Robin Aston and Kelsie Kestler are about to graduate from Southeast Missouri State University but don't have to worry about finding a job. Both lined that up before going to college. The women will have jobs waiting for them teaching special education in the Fort Zumwalt School District in St. Charles County. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the jobs are guaranteed through a "Grow Your Own Teacher" program. The district began the program in 2005 in response to difficulty in recruiting teachers for some high-demand subjects. High school seniors apply and go through a screening process. Those selected receive $3,000 per semester for four years - $24,000 total. In return, they must spend their first four years after college teaching in the district.