Stanford University announced the launch of the Stanford Teaching Fellows, an initiative that will underwrite the full cost of tuition for up to five teacher candidates per year in the Stanford Teacher Education Program.
Applicants to the STEP Class of 2016 will be the first eligible for this award, to be determined by a combination of need, merit and commitment to under-served youth and communities. The inaugural cohort of Stanford Teaching Fellows will be notified upon acceptance to STEP this coming spring.
“We attract and retain the best and the brightest to STEP, those most likely to make significant impact in their schools and the broader educational system,” said Stanford University President John Hennessy. “It is difficult for young people to think about teaching, when there are alternative careers that might be more lucrative, though personally and spiritually less satisfying. This scholarship is our latest step to alleviate the financial barrier that deters some exceptionally gifted people from becoming teachers.”
The new full-tuition fellowship, made possible through a generous donation to STEP by long-term Stanford benefactors, is in addition to existing extensive financial aid offerings. About 97 percent of this year’s STEP class received tuition support of up to $25,000 in direct scholarships. STEP also provides the Dorothy Durfee Avery Loan Forgiveness Program, which awards up to $20,000 for teacher candidates who are eligible for the federal Perkins Loan, forgivable with four years of service to U.S. public schools. Along with Stanford support, teacher candidates are eligible for federal and state grants and loans.
“The Stanford Teaching Fellows program ensures that STEP will continue to prepare and support diverse and talented teachers who become leaders in K-12 schools,” said Ira Lit, STEP’s director. “Teacher candidates choose STEP because of the program’s commitment to creating excellent and equitable schools. The Teaching Fellows program sends a message that at Stanford the choice to pursue a career in education is not limited by one’s resources.”
STEP is a nationally- and internationally-recognized exemplary teacher education program, garnering high praise for the outstanding quality of its graduates and their impact on the field, through high retention rates and leadership roles within and beyond the classroom. A 2013 survey of STEP alumni found that 80 percent of graduates in the prior five years were still working in the profession, and more than half of these graduates were serving Title 1 schools, institutions supporting substantial populations of low-income students and families.
“Each day, we observe the impact our STEP graduates have in their classrooms, in their schools — and, most importantly, on each of the students they serve,” said Deborah Stipek, I. James Quillen Dean of the Stanford Graduate School of Education. “They are truly leaders within and beyond their classrooms, and they are helping to ensure that youth across this nation have an opportunity for a bright future.”
Upon completing the 12-month, full time program, STEP students receive a Master of Arts in Education degree and a preliminary California multiple or single subject teaching credential.
To learn more about STEP and the Stanford Teaching Fellowship, please visit: https://gse-step.stanford.edu/.
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