District 214 named to innovative Districts of Distinction list by national magazine

High School District 214 is one of 34 school districts across the country to be named to the “Districts of Distinction” list by District Administration magazine.

“Districts of Distinction” was established by District Administration magazine to honor school districts that are leading the way with new ideas that solve challenges. Honorees are selected based on quantifiable results and the replicability of their initiatives. The July 2019 Districts of Distinction honorees were selected by the magazine’s editors from numerous nominations.

District 214, the largest high school district in Illinois, was recognized for its Youth Apprenticeship program, which provides concrete job skills and training to students in cybersecurity, HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) and automotive services.

As part of the apprenticeship program, which began in the 2018-19 school year, students receive 20 to 30 hours a month of paid job training during the school year in addition to college coursework and mentoring. During the summer, they work up to 28 hours a week to expand their skills. At the end of the program, students receive either a federally registered apprenticeship certification or a youth apprenticeship certification in addition to up to a year of college credits.

“We are committed to helping students discover their futures and creating innovative opportunities for students to truly explore careers,” said Dan Petro, President of the District 214 Board of Education. “Through this youth apprenticeship program, students are developing the skills needed to thrive in the workforce, and gaining valuable experiences that will help them succeed.”

This is the ninth round of honorees for this national recognition program, which began in November 2014. 

The 34 school systems from 19 states honored in this round have launched programs that range from partnering with outside organizations for career training to improving literacy to using music to support at-risk students and English language learners. 

“These districts have developed innovative programs to support students in their education and well beyond the classroom,” says JD Solomon, editorial director of District Administration magazine. “We hope our readers are inspired by the efforts of these honorees to create successful initiatives in their own districts.”

To view a full list of the 2019 honorees, visit districtadministration.com/dod. To learn more about District 214's Youth Apprenticeship program, visit https://www.discover214.org/apprenticeships. 

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