Return to Headlines

VVSD Students to Benefit from $249K Pathways for Future Educators Grant

Three Rivers EFE Receives $249,000 Education Career Pathways Grant


Wilco, Bolingbrook HS and Romeoville HS Career and Technical Education Students to Benefit from Grant


Students Leading Class at Romeoville HS

Students of the Three Rivers Education for Employment system that includes students attending the WILCO Area Career Center from Bolingbrook and Romeoville High Schools will be the beneficiaries of a $249,000 grant from Career and Technical Education (CTE) Career Pathways Grants.  The purpose of the grant is to encourage students to pursue careers in education by creating early experiences in teaching and pathways into the teaching profession.

The CTE Career Pathways grants were awarded by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) from Governor JB Pritzker’s fiscal year 2020 budget.  Students in CTE Education Career Pathways will get a head start on teacher preparation through opportunities for hands-on learning, dual credit and credentials, as well as engaging in mentorship opportunities.

VVSD Director of Career and Technical Education Ms. Tammi Conn said, “VVSD is looking forward to expanding our partnership with our local institutions such as WILCO Area Career Center, Joliet Junior College, and Lewis University. Students in the program will receive experiences that will help prepare them through job shadow and practicum, opportunities to earn money for college through summer work with VVSD, earn scholarships, and be exposed to various programs through JJC and Lewis University that can potentially save money and time during their college programs. In addition, VVSD would be delighted to host students in the program as student teachers and will guarantee an interview for any student in the program with corresponding credentials to job vacancies.“

There are two ways for students to get involved in the program and engage in this opportunity. Students can sign up for the course “Teaching as a Profession,” or join the Future Educators of America/Educator’s Rising Career Technical Student Organization coming soon to both Bolingbrook HS and to Romeoville HS.

2018 survey conducted by ACT found that only five percent of test takers indicated they were interested in teaching as a profession. However, researchers suggested that students might change their minds if they had an early experience with teaching and direct paths into the profession. Fifty percent of teachers in Illinois teach in the same county in which they graduated from high school, highlighting that local pathways into the profession can diversify the teaching corps and strengthen the local teacher pipelines.

Illinois’ 58 Education for Employment (EFE) systems, including Three Rivers EFE, provide leadership for the state’s CTE program areas, including education.  Grantees submitted an implementation plan outlining how they will recruit underrepresented students into education careers to help meet the high demand for teachers of color across Illinois. The grant also requires a partnership between grantees and institutions of higher education, so students can earn dual credit or credentials and certifications prior to high school graduation. 

CTE programs prepare students for both the workforce and the pursuit of postsecondary opportunities by developing students’ technical and employability skills while also strengthening their core academic abilities.

Learn more about the CTE Education Career Pathways Grant and Illinois’ State Plan for CTE at