Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH Grant)

Financial Assistance Office




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 General Information

 
The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program provides up to $4,000 per year in grants for graduate and undergraduate students who intend to teach full-time in high-need subject areas for at least four years at schools that serve students from low-income families.
  • Undergraduate Study: Up to $4,000 per year for first baccalaureate to a maximum of $16,000
  • Post-Baccalaureate Study: Up to $4,000 per year for first post-baccalaureate teacher certification program, up to remaining balance of undergraduate maximum
  • Graduate Study: Up to $4,000 per year for a Master’s degree to a maximum of $8,000

If you fail to complete the 4-year teaching obligation within 8 years of completing or ceasing your program of study, you will have to repay the grant with interest.

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 Eligibility Requirements

 
Student Eligibility Requirements to receive a TEACH Grant include:
  • Meet the general eligibility requirements  for federal student aid.
  • Meet the academic standards set out below.
  • Be enrolled in a program of study designated as TEACH Grant-eligible. Eligible programs are those that prepare a student to teach in a high-need area. For example, a bachelor’s program with a math major could qualify for a student who intends to be a math teacher. See the high need field section below for majors specific to FHSU.

Academic Standards for Undergraduate Students

If a student has not attempted any undergraduate coursework, an undergraduate student must meet one of the following requirements:
  • Score above the 75th percentile on a college admissions test (e.g. SAT, ACT), or
  • Graduate from high school with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale).

If a student has attempted any undergraduate coursework, an undergraduate student must meet the following requirement:
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale) through the most recent payment period for all of his/her college coursework.

Academic Standards for Graduate Students

During the first payment period, a graduate student must meet one of the following requirements:
  • Score above the 75th percentile on a graduate admissions test (e.g. GRE), or
  • Have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale) for all of his/her college coursework, or
  • Be a current teacher or be a retiree from another occupation with expertise in a high-need field, enrolled in a Master's degree program; or
  • Be a former teacher pursuing an alternative route to certification within a Master's degree program.

After the first payment period, a graduate student must meet the following requirement:
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 (on a 4.0 scale) through the most recent term in the Master's degree program.


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 Application Process

 
  1. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). (You do not have to demonstrate financial need as with most other federal programs.)
  2. Sign a TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve  and respond to requests by the U.S. Department of Education confirming your continuing intention to meet the teaching obligation.
  3. Complete TEACH Grant counseling.


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 Agreement to Serve and Promise to Pay

 
Each year you receive a TEACH Grant, you must sign an online TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve and Promise to Pay (service agreement). The TEACH Grant service agreement specifies the conditions under which the grant will be awarded, the teaching service requirements, and includes an acknowledgment by you that you understand that if you do not meet the teaching service requirements you must repay the grant as a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, with interest accrued from the date the grant funds were first disbursed.

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 Teaching Obligation

 
To avoid repaying the TEACH Grant with interest you must be a highly-qualified, full-time teacher in a high-need subject area for at least four years at a school serving low-income students. You must complete the four years of teaching within eight years of finishing the program for which you received the grant. You incur a four-year teaching obligation for each educational program for which you received TEACH Grant funds, although you may work off multiple four-year obligations simultaneously under certain circumstances.

Highly-Qualified Teacher
You must perform the teaching service as a highly-qualified teacher, which is defined in federal law at http://www.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/esea02/pg107.html.

Full-Time Teacher
You must meet the state's definition of a full time teacher and spend the majority of your time teaching one of the high-need subject areas. Elementary teachers who teach many subjects would not be able to fulfill their service agreement.

High Need Field
  • Bilingual Education and English Language Acquisition
  • Foreign Language
  • Mathematics
  • Reading Specialist
  • Science
  • Special Education
  • Other teacher shortage areas documented as high-need by the Federal government, a State government, or a local education agency, approved by the U.S. Department of Education, and listed in the Department of Education's Annual Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide Listing at the time you begin your teaching service.

Fort Hays State University considers the following programs to be TEACH Grant eligible as High Need subject areas:
  • Undergraduate Teaching Programs in Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Earth and Space, Physics, Physical Science
  • Graduate Programs in English as Second Language (ESOL), Special Education (SPED)--Gifted and Adaptive Tracks and Reading Specialist

More information about Fort Hays State University teacher education programs can be found by visiting the FHSU Department of Teacher Education site.

Schools Serving Low-Income Students
Schools serving low-income students include elementary or secondary schools listed in the Department of Education’s Annual Directory of Designated Low-Income Schools for Teacher Cancellation Benefits. A school must be listed at the time service obligation begins.

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 Documentation

 
You must respond promptly to any requests for information or documentation from the U.S. Department of Education, even if they seem repetitive. These requests will be sent to you while you are still in school as well as once you are out of school. You will be asked regularly to confirm that you either still intend to teach or that you are teaching as required. You must provide documentation to the U.S. Department of Education at the end of each year of teaching.

If you temporarily cease enrollment in your program of study or if you encounter situations that affect your ability to begin or continue teaching, you will need to contact the U.S. Department of Education to avoid your grants being converted to loans before you are able to complete your teaching obligation.

Failure to complete the teaching obligation, respond to requests for information, or properly document your teaching service will cause the TEACH Grant to be permanently converted to a loan with interest. Once a grant is converted to a loan it can't be converted back to a grant.

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