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Onalaska, Viterbo offering high school students early start to teaching career



Students interested in getting started to one day leading a classroom are being helped through a partnership between the Onalaska’s school district and Viterbo University.

The Onalaska Teacher Education Academy will help find the future workforce says director of instruction Roger Fruit.

“There’s a real teacher shortage right now,” Fruit said. “In many cases, sometimes they’re lucky to even have a handful of qualifying candidates.”

Fruit says there are a group of students interested in the program, which would be part of Viterbo’s Intro to Education class.

Classes would be for juniors and seniors interested in a teaching career or those who are simply curious what teaching entails.

Fruit said they have a list of potential students who will take the course due to their results of a career interest survey taken before they took ACTs.

Fruit says only 5 percent of ACT takers in the state from 2015 expressed interest in being an educator, and 62 percent felt unprepared when they entered the field.

The courses would start in the fall and college credit would be offered.

Born in Decorah Iowa. I've been a news reporter for the last 10 years, starting right out of college in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Other professional opportunities led me to Marshalltown, Iowa and Antigo Wisconsin, before I finally was afforded the opportunity here in La Crosse. I've been here since 2016. I also act as the voice of local sports, doing play by play of high school and college football and basketball. When not working I enjoy golfing.

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