UF graduates first cohort of teacher apprentices in Florida

The Florida Department of Education oversees hundreds of apprenticeship programs, from well-known trades like electricians and plumbers to lesser-known opportunities like hotel or restaurant managers. However, teachers, professionals synonymous with education, have never had a registered apprenticeship pathway– until now.

This past weekend, the University of Florida graduated the first group of teacher apprentices in the state of Florida. UF had nine apprentices completing this pilot program, with six students graduating Spring 2024 and the remainder finishing over the summer. After graduation, these apprentices will transition into full-time, professionally certified teachers.

UF prepared to pioneer this registered apprenticeship pathway after years of research into its potential benefits. By partnering with the Alachua County, Marion County and P.K. Yonge school districts, the university was able to develop a new collaborative approach to teacher training.

Practical teaching experience is already a cornerstone of UF’s traditional education programs. However, this is the first time that the university has engaged in a true “earn and learn” model tailored toward people actively employed full-time within a school setting.

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UF News May 10, 2024