January 30, 2008
Nationwide 'Rhodes Scholarship' program launched to attract top teachers
Stanford's School of Education is one of four leading U.S. graduate education programs selected to participate in a $6 million national initiative launched by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation to encourage student teachers to pursue careers in high-need schools.
The new Leonore Annenberg National Teaching Fellowship, heralded as a nationwide "Rhodes Scholarship" program for teaching, will be awarded to outstanding recent college graduates and career-changers who commit to work in disadvantaged, urban or rural secondary schools for three years.
Stanford will award 25 fellowships, which include a $30,000 stipend and one year of graduate education to complete the Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP). In exchange, fellows must agree to teach in a high-needs secondary school for at least three years, during which they will receive intensive mentoring and assessment.
"Stanford's STEP program is a good match for this initiative because it has been recognized in studies of teacher education as one of the highest quality teacher preparation programs in the country," said Deborah Stipek, dean of the School of Education. "STEP is committed to preparing teachers to be effective in schools where children bring challenges that accompany poverty and English language learners."
The fellowships are part of a national initiative developed by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation and supported by $5 million from the Annenberg Foundation and $1 million from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Over three years, the program will produce 100 Annenberg Fellows, divided equally among four of the nation's leading teacher-preparation programs. In addition to Stanford, the University of Pennsylvania, University of Virginia and University of Washington have been selected to participate.
This fall, applications for the Leonore Annenberg Teaching Fellowships will be available through the Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP), with the first fellows expected to begin master's work in 2009 and start classroom teaching in 2010. Stanford plans to award eight or nine STEP candidates with fellowships every year through 2011, selecting from a diverse, high-caliber pool of recent college graduates with bachelor's degrees in arts and sciences, as well as outside applicants pursuing teaching as a second career.