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The 193rd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 19D: Scholarship program known as tomorrow's educators program; guidelines

Section 19D. There shall be a scholarship program to be administered by the board, in consultation with the department of elementary and secondary education, which shall be known as the tomorrow's educators program to encourage students to teach in public schools by providing qualified students with scholarships for tuition, fees and additional costs of attendance as calculated by the student's institution of higher education, including, but not limited to, room and board, books and supplies, transportation, child care and personal expenses, for a bachelor's degree program or post-baccalaureate coursework at a public institution of higher education in the commonwealth leading to the certification required for employment at a public school. The program shall be subject to appropriation.

The board shall promulgate guidelines governing the tomorrow's educators program which shall include the following:

(1) Eligibility for the program shall be limited to high school graduates, undergraduate students and students enrolled in post-baccalaureate educator preparation programs who: (i) agree to complete a bachelor's degree or post-baccalaureate educator preparation program in a public institution of higher education in the commonwealth; (ii) successfully complete a bachelor's degree or post-baccalaureate educator preparation program at the institution of higher education and obtain the appropriate certification in accordance with section 38G of chapter 71; and (iii) commit to teaching for 4 years in a school district, as defined in section 2 of chapter 70, in the commonwealth.

(2) An outreach plan to attract individuals from underrepresented populations to the education profession through the program, which shall diversify the educator workforce consistent with chapter 132 of the acts of 2019.

(3) Procedures for repayment of the amount of scholarship benefits for persons who participate in the program but who fail to complete the 4-year teaching commitment; provided, however, that the procedures shall be designed to ensure there are no disincentives for low-income students to participate in the program and shall consider: (i) the amount of scholarship benefits the participant has received; (ii) the participant's current income if not working as a public school educator; (iii) whether the participant is currently working in another position that helps to support or educate students; and (iv) the amount of time the participant taught in a public school district in the commonwealth.