News Brief - 1/27/17 Online, competency-based university partners with SKSD to help bolster teaching faculty KENT WGU Washington the state-endorsed online university announced a new scholarship opportunity to encourage non-teaching South Kitsap School District (SKSD) employees to become certified educators. The scholarship is known simply as the South Kitsap School District Scholarship. Up to $1,800 will be awarded to multiple recipients and applied toward tuition in any of WGU Washington’s 31 Teachers College degree programs. WGU Washington and SKSD established a strategic partnership in 2016 with the goal of providing pathways to high-quality educational opportunities that address the statewide teacher shortage. In addition to the scholarship, WGU Washington offers a five percent tuition discount to all district employees. More information about the partnership is available on both the WGU Washington and SKSD websites. “Great teachers keep our schools strong and help give our young people the best chance to succeed,” said Misty Dieffenbach, SKSD Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources. “WGU Washington’s model allows our employees to continue working while earning high-quality, affordable credentials.” WGU Washington’s Teachers College was named the Best Value in teacher education in 2015 by the National Council on Teacher Quality, rating higher than 1,100 other programs across the nation. The score was based on a combination of factors, including quality, affordability and how well the school prepares future teachers for the realities of the classroom. In addition to its proven quality, WGU Washington’s Teachers College degree programs are affordable about $6,000 per year for most programs. Also, the competency-based model allows students to study at their own pace, allowing students to accelerate their studies and complete their degrees faster.