- GATEWAY'S SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM
- Administered by INCCRRA - Illinois
Network of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies
What is the Gateway's Scholarship Program?
The Gateway's Scholarship Program was created
to improve the education of people working in child care centers
and family child care homes while increasing their compensation.
The first component, the Early Childhood Associate Degree Scholarship
Program for Child Care Center Staff, was implemented in 1996 to
upgrade the level of education of center staff working with your
children, while making the educational process affordable, increasing
wages, and reducing turnover.
In 1997, the program expanded state-wide
to include the Early Childhood Associate Degree Scholarship Program
for Family Child Care Providers. In the Fall of 1999, scholarship
assistance for CDA and CCP certification were added.
In order to provide the opportunity for child
care professionals to take the next step on the educational ladder,
the Early Childhood Bachelor's Degree Scholarship Program for child
care center staff and family child care providers has been added
to the other programs of the project.
Who is eligible to participate in the
Gateway's Scholarship Program?
Scholarships are awarded on the basis
of need and commitment to the early childhood field.
Any child care center staff working with
children, directors of centers, or family child care provider
who would like to attend a participating university to earn a
degree in Early Childhood Education or Child Development and
who meets the following criteria is eligible for a scholarship.
Be employed at least 30 hours per week
in a child care center or licensed family child care home;
Have at least 55 hours of transferable
credit toward a degree in Early Childhood Education or Child
Be eligible for university admission as
an in-state student;
Have worked in child care in Illinois
for at least one year; and
Earn less than $15 per hour as caregivers
or $15 per hour as directors.
Priority consideration is given to those working in
programs which care for 25% or more publicly subsidized children.
Programs not currently serving subsidized families, but willing to
give priority enrollment to subsidized families to fill future openings
are also eligible to apply.
What does the Scholarship pay for?
The scholarship covers 50-80% of the cost of tuition
and books, and provides a travel stipend each semester. Recipients
who are classroom staff are given paid time off to study, attend class
or meet personal needs.
Upon completion of 9-15 semester hours, scholarship
recipients receive either a pay increase or bonus in salary. The Gateway's Scholarship Program reimburses the center for one half of the
release time given and provides half of the bonus for recipients entitled
to a bonus under their contract.
Who Pays for the Gateway's Scholarship Program?
A partnership exists between the recipient, the
sponsoring child care program and the Gateway's Scholarship Program.
Each part pays a portion of the cost.
What commitments must the scholarship
- Commit to attend classes and successfully complete
9-15 semester hours toward a Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood
- May be asked to contribute a percentage of
the costs of tuition and books;
- Agree to remain at the sponsoring center, or
continue to operate their center or home, for one year after the
term of the scholarship, and remain in the early childhood field
in Illinois for an additional year.
What commitment must the sponsoring
Centers must agree to:
- Sponsor a scholarship recipient by contributing
a portion of the cost of tuition and books;
- Give recipients who are classroom staff
paid release time each week; and
- Agree to award the recipient either a bonus
or raise at the end of the scholarship year.
- How do I get more information? Contacts are below.