The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education or TEACH Grant is a program that helps you in paying for college if you want to pursue your career as a teacher.
What is a TEACH Grant?
It is not the usual grant that anyone can go apply for online. It is a student financial aid grant provided to the students who are currently in post-secondary education.
You must be willing to start a career in teaching and ready to serve in this profession for a long period of time. This grant is available for those who agree to teach in areas of less income. The areas mentioned have fewer teachers and coaches to help the kids make it through school.
*Important thing to remember*
If you are not able to meet the requirements that you will need to fulfill under your services, then all TEACH Grants you get will be converted into loans. These loans you must pay back with the interest. These loans are charged from the date at which you get the TEACH Grant.
Who qualifies for this Grant?
To qualify for TEACH grant you must follow some eligibility requirements for the federal student aid programs
- You first need the eligibility to enroll in federal student aid programs.
- The eligibility requires a student to be an undergraduate or a graduate student.
- TEACH grant-eligibility requires your college participation and your enrolment for qualification.
- You have to maintain a 3.25 cumulative grade point average or 75 percentage in the college admission test.
- You must clear the initial entrance and subsequent entrance interviews whenever you start each new academic year.
Is the Grant Need-Based?
Yes, TEACH grant is a need-based grant by the Federal Government given to the participants based on financial need.
The person must fill out the FAFSA form (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). There are some requirements for the application process which includes attached copies of family’s tax returns and bank account statements.
How does it Work?
The TEACH grant is not like other federal student grants. You must take certain classes to get this grant, and then you are going to have to get a specific job to prevent the grant from turning into a loan.
How do you Get It?
The program provides grants of nearly $4000 for a year to the student who agrees to serve for at least four years of full-time teaching in a field having a high need.
The student must work in a public or private school that is in low-income areas.
How do you Apply for a Teach Grant?
- You must ask your school administration or its financial aid office to participate (if not yet participated) in a TEACH Grant program.
There is no other way to get the TEACH Grant except that your school offers this service.
- You must fill out the form of called Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
A Federal Student Aid ID is required to fill out your FAFSA form which you can get by creating it on the Federal Student Aid ID website.
- There is an Initial and Subsequent Counselling you need to complete and fill out an agreement called Agreement to Serve (ATS) to be able to receive the grant.
The TEACH Grant Initial and Subsequent Counselling guide are for the introduction of what the program is. This Counselling is done each year and will cover general information along with the details about:
- The ATS
- The Grant Service Obligation
- The TEACH Grant process of converting it to a Loan (if a person fails in completing a service obligation)
You will need:
- Your FSA ID
- The school name that is eligible
- Mailing address
- Telephone number
- E-mail address
- Two references of two different people who you have known for 3 years and have different addresses
After completing each section, you will have to take a quiz to make sure that you understand the requirements of the process completely.
You can start your TEACH Grant Counselling from the official website.
*After completing the Initial and Subsequent Counselling, now you need to complete the paperwork of your TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve (ATS).
ATS is the official document to finally requesting a grant and enrolling in a program legally. Once you are done signing this document that means you are now officially in the program and if you are not able to complete the requirements, your TEACH Grant will be converted into a loan.
What Counts as a High-Need Field?
The TEACH Grant does cover the high-need fields in low-income areas. The high-need fields that are created by the Federal Government, depending on the number of students residing in such areas, the number of services required in particular fields and the number of teachers who are willing to provide the services in those fields.
This may include:
- Foreign Language
- Reading Specialists
- Special Education
- Bilingual Education
- English Language Acquisition (ESL Type Classes)
- Other fields termed as a high-need field which is mentioned in the federal government, a state government and in Department of Education’s annual Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide Listing.
Once you find out the service or field in the Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide Listing then check that the subject you are teaching is mentioned in the state listing right when you receive or qualify for the TEACH Grant service.
If the field is not listed there, it will, unfortunately, cause you to be in breach of the agreement. The loan given to you will then switch to an unsubsidized loan and that loan is payable by you with interest.
If you need more clarification for the requirements, kindly contact your school’s financial aid advisor so you can understand your options.
*Important thing to remember*
The Nationwide Listing you need to check has both areas mentions i.e. field areas and geographical shortage areas. For qualifying based on a high-need field that is present in Nationwide Listing, you need to teach in subject area not graphical area.
Can I receive multiple Grants?
Yes, you can have multiple Grants on a yearly basis of each year you are studying. You can open up two separate TEACH Grant service obligations by using an undergraduate Grant and a graduate education Grant.
You can get twice the benefit with the same amount of work by doing this method. The two service obligations you will be able to double count your actual teaching time after you graduate. Just teaching the four total years will satisfy the requirements of the undergraduate and graduate service obligations.
If you want to be a teacher you can look at getting a TEACH Grant. You just need to make sure you work in a low-income area. This is a great grant to use if you plan to work in teaching for a long time.
If you want to learn more about money for college then check out tips on applying for a scholarship.