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


The University of St. Thomas will no longer participate in the Federal TEACH Grant Program effective for the 2015-2016 academic year.


Amount of Grant:

The TEACH Grant Program will provide funds to students who plan to teach full-time in high-need subject areas at schools that service students from low-income families. The grant amount will vary by term based on your actual enrollment and whether your program is classified as on-campus or off-campus (i.e. cohort programs). The total maximum grant amount will not exceed $8,000 for a TEACH-eligible master's degree program.

On August 2, 2011, Congress passed the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011, which put into place an automatic process of "across-the-board" Federal budget cuts, known as the sequester, to take effect if Congress failed to enact legislation to reduce the Federal deficit by March 1, 2013. Congress did not act and the sequester is now in effect. Due to the budget cuts all Federal TEACH Grant awards are subject to a percentage reduction set by the U.S. Government. At this time the university does not know how long the sequester will be in effect but will provide information as it becomes available.

Please note: Because total financial aid must not exceed the cost of attendance, receiving a Federal TEACH Grant may reduce your eligibility for other sources of financial aid.

Teaching Obligation:

Grant recipients agree to teach for at least four years within eight years of finishing the program for which you received the Federal TEACH Grant (i.e. Masters degree) and to teach high-need subjects in designated schools that serve low-income students. If you do not complete the four-year teaching obligation, your grant will convert to an unsubsidized loan, which you will have to repay with interest calculated back to the date the funds were disbursed.

Service Agreement:

Each year you receive a Federal TEACH Grant, you must sign a Federal TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve (ATS), which is available electronically on the U.S. Department of Education Web site. When you sign the ATS, you are agreeing to repay the grant as a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, with interest accrued from the date the grants funds were first disbursed, if you do not complete the teaching service requirement. If the grant is converted to a loan, it cannot be converted back to a grant.

High-Need Subject Areas:

  • Bilingual education and English language acquisition
  • Foreign language
  • Mathematics
  • Reading
  • Science
  • Special education
  • Other identified teacher shortage areas (see the U.S. Department of Education's nationwide listing of teacher shortage areas)

Low-Income Schools:

A low-income directory of public and private nonprofit elementary and secondary schools designated by the U.S. Department of Education as having a high concentration of students from low-income families can be found at https://www.tcli.ed.gov/CBSWebApp/tcli/.


To be eligible for a TEACH Grant, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Be enrolled in an eligible program (i.e. Masters degree) while working toward a career in teaching and/or in a high-need subject area
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 as a high school graduate and maintain that GPA throughout your academic program or score above the 75th percentile on at least one battery on a national standardized college admissions test
  • Complete TEACH Grant counseling and sign a TEACH Grant Agreement to Service each year
  • Complete a FAFSA, although you do not have to demonstrate financial need to be eligible

Federal TEACH Grant Eligible Programs at St. Thomas:

  • English as a Second Language (M.A.)
  • K-12 World Language and Cultures (B.A., M.A.)
  • Mathematics Education (B.A., M.A.)
  • Reading Specialist (M.A.)
  • Science Specialist (B.A., M.A.)
  • Special Education (M.A.)

    You must be enrolled in one of the above programs to qualify for the Federal TEACH Grant at the University of St. Thomas. If you are unsure if your program qualifies you may contact Susan Andersson in the School of Education at 651-962-4448.


You must confirm within 120 days of completing or otherwise ceasing enrollment in your teacher preparation program that you are fulfilling (or plan to fulfill) the terms and conditions of your service agreement or your grant will immediately revert to a loan. You must document your teaching service, and your documentation must be certified by the chief administrative officer at the school where you teach.

How to Apply:

Students who are interested in applying for a TEACH Grant for the 2014-2015 academic year should:

  • Complete and submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for 2014-15 at www.fafsa.gov. The Federal School Code for St. Thomas is 002345.
  • Contact Becky Stevenson in the Graduate Financial Aid Office at 651-962-4053.  

Once your application has been approved you will need to complete the following steps:

  • Accept your Federal TEACH Grant award
  • Complete Federal TEACH Grant Counseling online
  • Complete an Agreement to Serve (ATS) through the U.S. Department of Education

Details regarding these required steps will be communicated to you separately by the Financial Aid Office. The Federal TEACH Grant will disburse to your student account around the first day of your class each semester after all steps have been completed.

Please Note: If you are not already committed to teaching a high-need subject in a low-income school, please use caution when considering this possible source of funds. According to some estimates, only 20 percent of students who participate in the TEACH Grant Program will be able to use the funds as grants, while many students will see their funds converted to loans with accumulated interest.