The Lindsay Unified Teacher Residency Program offers a pathway to teaching degrees, master’s degree in 1 year

LINDSAY, Calif. (KFSN) — A South Valley school district is taking steps to recruit more educators through a new teaching pipeline program.

As part of the Lindsay Unified Teacher Residency Program, participants will complete their master’s and teaching credentials in just one year. They will also receive a living allowance of $20,000 to cover costs.

They are already successful. In their first year, nine students graduated from the program – all taking jobs in the Central Valley.

Sayla Arguelles is a teacher at Kennedy Elementary, but last year she was a student herself.

“It was an intense program, but totally worth it,” said Lindsay Residency graduate Sayla Arguelles.

Born and raised in Lindsay, Sayla moved to Monterey for her high school diploma with dreams of returning to teach in her hometown. That’s when she heard about the Lindsay Unified Teacher Residency Program.

“I immediately thought it was a great opportunity,” Arguelles said. “They told me I would get my teaching degrees and my master’s degree in a year.”

Students are paired with a Lindsay Unified teacher as a mentor. Each week, they will spend time shadowing their mentor in the classroom, in addition to completing their own class assignments.

“If you want to be an educator, you want to get your teaching degree and master’s degree, this program is for you,” said coordinator Yazmin Martin. “You can really see from start to finish what it’s like to be an educator.”

Although applications are open to all future teachers in the valley, they hope to attract as many Lindsay Unified graduates as possible.

“They know a lot about our families, our cultures, what our people do, and what our learners are like,” said mentor Kristy Ceasar.

“We can connect and talk about what’s going on in our town and how we were raised,” Arguelles added.

After graduation, they will commit to teaching for four years in one of four districts – Lindsay, Dinuba, Cutler-Orosi or Woodlake Unified School Districts

“They follow this program until the end and there are no surprises,” added Martin. “When they become educators, they are really prepared.”

The program costs around $20,000, most of which is covered by grants and financial aid. A starting salary for an entry-level teaching position is nearly $60,000.

If you are interested in applying, visit their website.

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