For professionals seeking a career change, Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) is offering a one-year certification program that will open doors to opportunities in K–12 classrooms.
The IndyTeach Apprenticeship is a no-cost, fully embedded teacher training program offering elementary and secondary content-area licensure. The program is designed for those who have completed a bachelor’s degree in any field and wish to pursue a career in education.
After a successful pilot year in three IPS elementary schools, the district is now accepting applications for the 2023–2024 cohort through March 31, 2023.
Six teacher apprentices (50% of whom identify as people of color) are currently working in three IPS elementary schools. Apprentices work full time alongside their assigned mentors from July through May and gradually take over teaching responsibilities. During this time, they earn a salary and benefits and receive financial assistance with licensure requirements such as testing and application fees.
“I am so thankful I found IndyTeach. It has been an awesome way to get my teaching license and not have to take extra classes at a university,” says Chantel Rohdy, IndyTeach apprentice. “Being in the classroom with students has been the most rewarding benefit of the program.
I get to come to school each day and see [the students’] smiling faces. IndyTeach is a wonderful opportunity to gain great teachers in Indiana. I am so blessed to have been a part of this program and look forward to positively impacting more students’ lives in the future.”
IndyTeach removes long-standing barriers to entering the teaching profession and provides participants instructional training focused on teaching in urban and diverse environments. For this apprenticeship, IPS partners with Christel House Indianapolis. The local network of charter schools developed IndyTeach in 2017 to address their staffing needs.
IndyTeach is part of Proving What’s Possible, an IPS districtwide initiative to recruit and retain diverse, high-quality teachers for IPS classrooms. “Just one year in, Proving What’s Possible is building on the momentum and progress that IPS has been seeing in recent years — including steady increases in both applicants and hired teachers of color, and we’re proud to have recently eliminated the retention gap between all teachers and teachers of color,” said Christina Aden, IPS chief human resources officer.
She notes that overall teaching hires of people of color increased from 31 to 33% over the last two years, while teaching applications from people of color jumped from 38 to 47 percent since 2021.