The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant is the only federal grant program specifically for teachers-in-training. With the TEACH grant, full time students can receive up to $4,000 a year which does not have to be repaid. Here’s a brief rundown:
- You must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
- You must be enrolled as an undergraduate, post-baccalaureate or graduate student.
- Your curriculum must be in preparation for teaching a high-need subject.
- You must agree to teach at a US Department of Education designated low income school.
- You must maintain a 3.25 grade point average.*
- You must score in the 75th percentile (or better) during your college admissions test.*
- * These two qualifications do not apply to former teachers returning for a better teaching degree, current teachers who are also grad students or retirees coming from a “high-need occupation”.
What are considered “high-need subjects”?
- US Dept. of Education determined teacher shortage area
- Bilingual Education and English Language Acquisition
- Foreign Language
- Reading Specialists
- Special Education
How to get a TEACH grant
To get a TEACH grant, the first step is to file a FAFSA form. It should be noted that you don’t have to demonstrate financial need; the FAFSA is just the method for getting your application into the grant system. You’ll also need to file any TEACH grant application forms required by the college you’re to be enrolled in.
If you do not maintain your financial requirements as listed above, and teach for 4 of the first 8 years after you graduate, your grant will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. This means it must be repaid and you’ll be charged interest from the date you were awarded the original TEACH grant.