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Program FAQ

 

INDEX OF QUESTIONS

 

TEACHING IN NYC PUBLIC SCHOOLS
1) What happens at the end of a Fellow’s two to three years in the Fellowship?

 

ALTERNATIVE CERTIFICATION
1) What does "alternative certification" mean?
2) Do Fellows receive state certification?
3) What exams do Fellows need to take?

QUALIFICATIONS

1) What type of person is a good candidate for the NYC Teaching Fellows program?
2) Is a person eligible if s/he has no previous teaching experience or prior coursework in education?
3) How can someone determine whether s/he is eligible for the NYC Teaching Fellows?
4) Are individuals who have worked as substitute teachers in New York City eligible for the program?
5) Why aren't certified teachers eligible to apply and what should they do to get teaching positions in NYC?

ADMISSION
1) Why wouldn't an applicant be accepted?
2) Why wouldn't an applicant be accepted this year when s/he was accepted last year?

PLACEMENT
1) What do Fellows teach?
2) How does a person know what s/he is qualified to teach?
3) Where do Fellows teach?
4) How does the placement process work?
5) Can a Fellow change his/her placement after s/he has started teaching?

 

PRE-SERVICE TRAINING & ONGOING SUPPORT
1) How are Fellows prepared for the classroom?
2) How intensive is pre-service training?
3) How long is pre-service training?
4) What support is provided to Teaching Fellows?

 

MASTER'S DEGREE PROGRAM
1) What type of Master's degree do Fellows receive?
2) How long does it take a Fellow to get his/her Master's degree?

 

COMPENSATION / BENEFITS
1) What is the starting salary for NYC Teaching Fellows?
2) What employment benefits do Fellows receive?
3) What is meant by "subsidized Master's degree"?

 

 

TEACHING IN NYC PUBLIC SCHOOLS

1. What happens at the end of a Fellow's two to three years in the Fellowship?

The two to three years of the Fellowship are equivalent to the time it takes a Fellow to complete his/her Master's degree. During and after that time, Fellows are regular teachers with all of the rights and responsibilities of any other NYC public school teacher. After completing the Master's degree, Fellows are eligible for Initial certification and can continue to play a vital role in the lives of New York City students. We encourage Fellows to make a long-term commitment to the city's students and schools, as many experts believe that teachers need at least five years of experience to reach their full potential as educators.

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ALTERNATIVE CERTIFICATION

1. What does "alternative certification" mean?

As an alternate route program, the Fellowship accelerates the process of bringing new teachers to the classrooms that need them most. Rather than completing a traditional teacher education program prior to entering the classroom, Fellows engage in a short, intensive pre-service training program and complete further academic requirements while they teach.
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2. Do Fellows receive state certification?

During their time in the Fellowship, Fellows are certified under a Transitional B certificate issued by the state. This certificate is valid for up to three years, so long as the teacher maintains good standing as a Fellow. Upon completion of the Master's program, which typically takes two to three years, Fellows may apply for Initial certification. After they have taught for three years (including their time in the Fellowship), Fellows may apply for Professional certification.
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3. What exams do Fellows need to take?

All Fellows must take and pass the Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST) and the appropriate Content Specialty Test (CST) before they can begin teaching.

An additional test, the written Assessment of Teaching Skills (ATS-W) is required for Initial certification.
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QUALIFICATIONS

1. What type of person is a good candidate for the NYC Teaching Fellows program?

There is no one profile for an ideal Teaching Fellows candidate; Fellows come from a wide range of backgrounds and bring to the program a diverse set of talents and skills. Strong candidates are those who are committed to having a positive effect on student achievement, who display excellence in their previous endeavors, and who are dedicated to reaching and influencing students—especially those in under-resourced areas—on a daily basis.

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2. Is a person eligible if s/he has no previous teaching experience or prior coursework in education?

Yes. Individuals without prior teaching experience or coursework in education are eligible for the program and encouraged to apply. The Fellowship is specifically designed to attract high-quality applicants from diverse, non-education backgrounds into the teaching profession.

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3. How can someone determine whether s/he is eligible for the NYC Teaching Fellows?

Applicants to the Fellowship must meet a number of strict eligibility requirements.
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4. Are individuals who have worked as substitute teachers in New York City eligible for the program?

Anyone who has worked as a full-time teacher in a New York City public school at any time since September 2002 is not eligible for this program. (This includes PPTs.) Individuals who hold or have worked under an occasional per diem (day-to-day substitute) license are eligible to apply.

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5. Why aren't certified teachers eligible to apply, and what should they do to get teaching positions in NYC?

The Teaching Fellows program is specifically designed to provide training and support to individuals who have had no education coursework or experience. There are other, more appropriate paths to employment in New York City for certified teachers and individuals who have completed teacher education programs. These paths offer financial assistance to help pay for Master's degree tuition or outstanding loans. For more information about these incentives and how to apply for a position, please refer to the Department of Education's recruitment website or call 1-800-TeachNYC.
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ADMISSION

1. Why wouldn't an applicant be accepted?

NYCTF is one of the most competitive teaching programs in the country. Because we receive an exceptional number of applications each year, we are unable to provide personalized feedback to applicants who have not been accepted to the Fellowship.

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2. Why wouldn’t an applicant be accepted this year when s/he was accepted last year?

Our applicant pool changes from year to year, as do the needs of New York City’s public schools.
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PLACEMENT

1. What do Fellows teach?

Teaching Fellow candidates are accepted to teach specific subjects. The subject that a candidate is accepted to teach is based on the staffing needs of the schools, as well as his/her eligibility and subject area preferences. (Candidates have an opportunity to learn more about eligibility and express their preferences if they are invited to interview.) A candidate’s eligibility is determined according to New York State Education Department regulations, which stipulate that a person must have either an undergraduate major or a graduate degree in a subject in order to teach it as a secondary subject area. Fellows are especially needed to teach bilingual education, math, science, Spanish, and special education.

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2. How does a person know what s/he is qualified to teach?

What a person is qualified to teach depends on his/her academic history. Generally speaking, to be qualified to teach a subject, s/he must have either an undergraduate major or a graduate degree in that field; for example, in order to teach English, a Fellow must have majored in English in his/her undergraduate or graduate studies.
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3. Where do Fellows teach?

Fellows teach primarily in high-need schools in the Bronx and central Brooklyn. Vacancies in other areas are limited.
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4. How does the placement process work?

Placement is the process through which teachers find their teaching positions in the New York City public school system. This process includes interviews with principals and hiring personnel at their schools.

 

It is NYCTF’s mission to staff schools in high-need areas, and all candidates should be prepared to teach wherever they are needed most. Each Fellow is responsible for finding his/her own school-level position in an assigned region teaching an assigned subject area. Although candidates have the opportunity to express their subject area and borough preferences, these assignments are driven primarily by school needs and by each Fellow’s eligibility. Most Fellows find placements in high-need schools in the Bronx and central Brooklyn. Fellows must be extremely flexible about their teaching positions.
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5. Can a Fellow change his/her placement after s/he has started teaching?

There are opportunities to transfer to other schools in accordance with the procedures and rights that apply to all New York City teachers.
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PRE-SERVICE TRAINING & ONGOING SUPPORT

1. How are Fellows prepared for the classroom?

The training program for Midyear Fellows is a full-time, six-week commitment and consists of two main components: 1) field placement work, during which Fellows observe and assist experienced New York City teachers in classrooms, and 2) student achievement framework (SAF) sessions, during which Fellows learn key instructional design and classroom management skills from an experienced teacher.

June 2008 Fellows will train for seven weeks over the summer. More information will be available in late fall.
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2. How intensive is pre-service training?

The Teaching Fellows pre-service training program concentrates a great deal of training into only a few weeks; thus, training is extremely demanding. Due to strict New York State guidelines and the critical part training plays in the Teaching Fellows program, Fellows cannot miss any portion of training.

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3. How long is pre-service training?

For Midyear Fellows in the first training session, pre-service training is a six-week, full-time commitment beginning September 24.  Midyear Fellows assigned to the second training session will begin the five-week training in early December.

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4. What support is provided to Teaching Fellows?

The Fellowship coordinates support strategies for Fellows that are implemented at the school and regional levels. The aim is to foster a support network for Fellows that includes mentors, university faculty, and NYCTF program staff. For more information, please see our training & support page

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MASTER'S DEGREE PROGRAM

1. What type of Master's degree do Fellows receive?

Each Fellow acquires a Master's degree that qualifies him/her for certification in the subject s/he teaches.

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2. How long does it take a Fellow to get his/her Master's degree?

The Master's program takes two to three years to complete. Fellows attend classes during the school year and over the summer. Classes during the school year will take place in the evenings. Fellows should expect a full-time commitment to coursework during the summer after their first year of teaching. Some Fellows may be required to undertake coursework during the summer after their second year of teaching as well.

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COMPENSATION / BENEFITS 

1. What is the starting salary for NYC Teaching Fellows?

The starting salary and schedule for Fellows is the same as that for all New York City teachers. For teachers with a Bachelor's degree and no other coursework, the starting salary is currently $42,517. Salary is scaled according to education and teaching experience in the NYC public school system.
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2. What employment benefits do Fellows receive?

Fellows are eligible for the same benefits as all other New York City teachers, including health insurance and a pension plan. For more information about benefits for teachers, please visit the United Federation of Teachers' website.
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3. What is meant by "subsidized Master's degree"?

Please see our Master's Degree page for information on the subsidized Master's degree.

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