Why Teaching Fellows?
You believe all students can learn. We give you the skills to prove it.
We are training a generation of great teachers who believe that change starts in the classroom.
We prepare exceptional teachers for the students who need them most – those in our country’s most underserved communities, where systemic inequities and individual prejudices deny too many students access to a great education.
Our teachers acknowledge the immense challenges of poverty but reject its limitations. They believe every lesson has the power to inspire, every hour in the classroom is precious, and every student has the potential to succeed. They know that having even one top teacher can shape students’ lives well into the future.
It’s not easy to defy the odds, and great teaching doesn’t happen overnight. Our teachers develop the skills to help students build their knowledge by making meaningful connections between challenging, meaningful content and students’ unique values and experiences.
Our programs aren’t for everyone. We believe teaching is a privilege and we hold the highest standards of any training program in America. But those who rise to meet them join an elite group of educators, more than 35,000 strong. Together they are proving the transformative power of great teaching, and proving what’s possible in public education. We call them Teaching Fellows.
How it Works
We transform accomplished professionals and college graduates into excellent teachers.
TNTP Teaching Fellows is a rigorous alternative certification program that recruits and trains talented career changers and recent college graduates to be outstanding teachers in high-need schools across the country.
Here’s how it works:
- You choose where you want to teach. We have programs in Baltimore, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and New Orleans.
- Once accepted, you’ll begin an intensive summer training program to learn the fundamentals of great teaching. Every day, expert educators will help you master critical teaching skills like engaging students with complex and meaningful ideas and building bridges between challenging academic content and students’ unique values and experiences.
- After successfully completing summer training and securing a teaching position at a local school, you will begin teaching full-time, earning a full teacher’s salary.
- Throughout the year, you will be enrolled in TNTP Academy or our partner university. Depending on your specific setting, you may be enrolled in an in-person or a virtual program. No matter which format you end up in, you will receive personalized virtual or in-person coaching and helpful feedback about your performance. You will also participate in seminars, either in-person or online, to help you master more advanced teaching techniques, including in-depth content knowledge.
- If you prove after training that you have what it takes to be a great teacher, we will recommend you for certification—a high standard not all candidates reach. Graduating from our program signals you are a certified teacher with a proven record.
Our Teacher Training
Our training is radically simple: focused practice on key skills, knowledge, and mindsets to get new teachers off to a strong start.
Each great teacher is unique, but all do certain basic things well. Our training hones those essentials, starting with core skills in summer pre-service training. In the fall, Fellows begin teaching and learning advanced techniques, which they can apply the next day in class, through evening seminars or virtual learning modules. At every step, we emphasize:
INTENSIVE CLASSROOM PRACTICE: Where traditional teacher preparation leaves little time for hands-on skill-building, our innovative training is centered around actual teaching experience and focused practice on core skills, such as reflecting on students’ values, experiences, and ambitions to create opportunities for students to see themselves in challenging content that will prepare them for success.
EXPERT COACHING: You can’t improve if you don’t know how you are doing. Beginning in summer training and continuing throughout your first year, our expert coaches provide constructive feedback to help you grow quickly. All coaches are experienced teachers with a strong record of success. You will open your classroom to your coach regularly, either through classroom visits or through video you record, allowing them to see you in action, and provide actionable guidance and concrete strategies to apply in future lessons.
PERSONALIZED TRAINING: We set clear expectations and continually assess your progress as a new teacher, identifying areas of growth and customizing coursework to address those needs. Whether you are struggling with lesson planning or striving to improve your classroom management skills, we tailor our support and training to help you quickly get up to speed in that area.
Read about our high bar for new teachers.Download
We make teacher certification count. It’s a high bar – and an honor.
Teachers who make a strong start are more likely to remain successful over time. Yet most schools and preparation programs treat a teacher's first year like a warm-up, paying little attention to actual classroom performance.
Not us. We award certification only to new teachers who demonstrate mastery of instructional skills and a consistent ability to help their students learn and thrive.
Beginning in pre-service training and continuing through your first year, we carefully assess and support your growth, considering a variety of evidence from your classroom to ensure you are developing critical skills and are on track to become a great teacher. At every step, you will know how you are doing and what you need to do to improve.
We hold the highest standards for certification of any program in the country, and not everyone meets them. But by setting a high bar and supporting rapid growth, we ensure that all Teaching Fellows enter the classroom ready to make a strong start and a lifetime of difference for the students who need them most.
As a graduate of our program, principals and district officials will know that you are not simply a certified teacher, but one with a proven track record of classroom success.
Our teachers are committed to excellence – from their students and from themselves.
Extraordinary responsibility requires extraordinary people. Our Teaching Fellows understand that teaching is not just a job, but a career – one that demands their best each day.
We look for accomplished professionals and recent graduates who aren’t yet certified as educators, but who possess the skills and knowledge to teach high-need subjects. In 2014, about 40 percent of Teaching Fellows taught special education, 15 percent taught science, 10 percent taught math and 8 percent taught bilingual education.
We only accept applicants who have what it takes to become great teachers. In 2014, just 10 percent of all applicants successfully met our standards for admission, training and entry into the classroom.
- Commitment to Educational Equity: They recognize and value the assets of their students and the community, know that all students can achieve at high levels, and take ownership of their responsibility to achieve outcomes for kids. They believe all students deserve access to rigorous, meaningful content because it gives them the power to own their life decisions.
- Critical Thinking: They have a clear, inclusive philosophy of education, make sound judgments and generate multiple solutions to challenges. They reflect on their own unconscious biases and work to understand how dynamics of power and institutional racism affect their students.
- Professionalism: They are reliable in meeting commitments and deadlines and show professional oral and written communication skills. They interact professionally with others, including colleagues, families, and communities to help students learn.
- Constant Learner: They continually seek opportunities to grow through applying feedback and building a habit of reflection. They reflect on and care for the needs of their students and themselves to ensure they are able to consistently provide rigorous and relevant instruction.
Meet a Teacher
4th Grade Reading Marquise Reine
4-5th Grade English Jeniqua Moran
2nd Grade Stevie Johnson
Marquise teaches fourth grade reading at Lusher Charter School. She earned a degree in Communications from Loyola University and worked as a sales executive before joining teachNOLA in 2010. Marquise was inspired to teach because she knew firsthand the difference between attending a failing school and a high-performing one: “As a teacher, I can singlehandedly change someone’s life – that’s my motivation every day.”
I WANT ALL STUDENTS TO GET THE RICHEST-POSSIBLE EDUCATION
Growing up in New Orleans, I went to a failing elementary school. I know what it’s like to have teachers sit at the back of the classroom and not do very much. I know what it’s like to go to a school that doesn’t have toilet paper or text books.
I was fortunate to attend a great high school—number one in the state. I got a great education there, but many of my friends and even my sister had a completely different experience.
We’ve seen so many gains in New Orleans schools recently. There’s a great opportunity with all the charters and the high level of accountability. I wanted to be part of that. We have amazing talent and potential in this city. I wanted to make sure all our students get the richest-possible education and the opportunities I enjoyed.
TEACH NOLA COACHES AND INSTRUCTORS WERE SO INVESTED IN MY SUCCESS
Pre-service training provided a strong foundation for me as a new teacher, but I still had room to improve. Throughout the year, my coach would observe me and suggest three concrete things to change in my classroom. It was realistic feedback and it helped me grow.
Just like I differentiate instruction for my students, my seminar leader customized training for me. One time, she opened her school on the weekend and had her students come in to give me an extra opportunity to practice. The students were pretending and having a good time, but a lot of things that happened during that exercise later happened in my real classroom. It really helped me.
At my last school, my students improved from a 13% pass rate to more than 50%. That’s tremendous growth, but it’s still not where it needs to be.
I want all my students to perform at the highest level."
Jeniqua joined Baltimore City Teaching Residency in 2008 and currently teaches fourth and fifth grade English at Commodore John Rodgers Elementary/Middle School. Jeniqua has also worked as a Residency Instructor and is helping lead the District’s Institute for new teachers. She relishes the opportunity to help new teachers “develop a love for teaching and this profession so they don’t get bogged down by daily challenges.”
AS A FORMER ATHLETE, I APPRECIATE REAL-TIME FEEDBACK
I’m really proud of my classroom management. For the last four years, I’ve worked in a program serving students with emotional disabilities and behavior challenges, but facilitators constantly say that they can’t tell that from my classroom.
My students come in several grades behind, but among my fourth graders, 8 out of 11 performed at the proficient or advanced level by the spring. Because I had a well-managed class, I was successful with them. It was their behavior that had been holding them back.
I’m grateful to be able to share that classroom expertise with new Residents. Even though I felt prepared as a new teacher, the training has improved since my time – back then coaches mostly provided moral support.
Being a former athlete, I appreciate the specific, real-time feedback that coaches provide today. It’s incredibly helpful that Residents have concrete performance expectations and in-the-moment guidance while they teach.
IN BALTIMORE, TEACHERS ARE RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR SUCCESS
The best thing about Baltimore is that it’s a small city – everyone knows everyone. At the same time, it has the attractions of a big city.
There is also a lot of opportunity for growth in Baltimore City Public Schools. With our evaluation system, it is very clear who is doing a great job. And if you’re producing in the classroom – regardless of age – you can really increase your income and enjoy leadership opportunities such as becoming a model or lead teacher. It’s gratifying to be valued for your contributions.
We were a tightly knit group, even though there was a huge age range.
The workload is rigorous and the expectations are high, but you’re given clear and actionable steps to improve and will be prepared from day one."
Stevie graduated from University of California-San Diego with a degree in international studies - political science. Committed to helping the most vulnerable, after college she began working with refugees in the U.S. before deciding to teach English as a Second Language in France. Discovering a passion for education, Stevie moved to Senegal to accept a teaching position at an International Baccalaureate high school. After deciding to return to the United States, Stevie applied for and was accepted as part of the inaugural cohort of the Nevada Teacher Corps. Today, she teaches second grade at Bertha Ronzone Elementary School. “I found my passion in the classroom, but Nevada Teacher Corps helped me develop into the effective teacher that my students deserve.”
NEVADA TEACHER CORPS SHAPED ME INTO THE TEACHER I AM TODAY
To be a great teacher, you have to do so many things well: content knowledge, lesson planning, classroom management, student relationships, parent communications. It can seem overwhelming because, well, it is.
On my first day of training, I couldn’t help thinking about how much I had to learn. But the coaches and staff at NTC helped me develop a plan to get to and through my first day of school. They sequenced the information I needed in a way that helped me improve every single day. Just as scaffolding information for students can be effective, you can’t give a new teacher everything on Day One.
During Pre-Service Training, the staff started with classroom management and Teach Like a Champion strategies. Throughout my first year in the classroom, my coaches were always one step ahead, anticipating the knowledge and skills that I’d need to be successful—giving me the next thing right when I needed it.
WE RESPECT CHILDREN BY MAKING SURE THEY HAVE A GREAT EDUCATION
I’ve taught students around the world, but I’m excited to be here in Nevada, where there’s still so much work to be done. We have students from low-income families, students whose first language isn’t English, and students whose parents are forced to move frequently for work that aren’t getting the education they deserve.
Nevada Teacher Corps places an emphasis on making sure teachers have the supportive and positive mindset they need to give all students a great education. I learned about the biases I bring to the classroom and that helped me see the assets every one of my students bring. All children need a teacher that can offer them a stable learning environment.