As a Golden Apple Scholar, you will be required to sign a contract to teach for five years in a school-of-need within seven years of obtaining an undergraduate degree and acquiring an Illinois Initial Teaching Certificate.
A school is designated by Golden Apple as a school-of-need by meeting one of the following two criteria:
- Economic Need: An Illinois school that has 30% or more students receiving free and reduced lunch, according to the School Report Card from the Illinois State Board of Education.
- Academic Need: An Illinois school in which the combined percentage of its students who approached, met, or exceeded state standards is less than or equal to 60% according to the report card on file with the Illinois State Board of Education. Please keep in mind the "Fast Fact" portion doesn't show the amount of students who are approaching state standards.
You can determine if a schools is one of economic need by checking the "Perkins Loan" forgiveness list. The Interactive Illinois Report Card website may also be used to determine if a school is one of academic need.
In order to verify your placement in a school of need you will be required to fill out an Employment Verification Form. 20% of your financial obligation will be forgiven for each year that you teach in a school-of -need.
Teaching Scholars in their first and second years of teaching in a school-of-need will be assigned a mentor by Golden Apple, per the Golden Apple Scholars Program outline of supports. Given the value of mentoring in the first years of teaching as cited by multiple education researchers in recent years, mentoring is a critical and requisite element of our program. Therefore, all Teaching Scholars who are teaching in schools-of-need must participate in our mentoring program in their first and second years of teaching.