Each day we see the realities of educational inequity juxtaposed against the concrete evidencethat when students in low-income communitiesare given opportunities they deserve, they excel.

Contact: Carrie James | Teach For America
    415.271.2000 | carrie.james@teachforamerica.org


For Immediate Release

5,200 New Teach For America Teachers Join Efforts to Expand Educational Opportunity Nationwide

Teacher Corps to Reach 600,000 Students in 43 Regions Across the Country

NEW YORK CITY, June 7, 2011—  Teach For America announced today that its incoming corps of 5,200 new teachers will enter the nation’s highest-need schools this fall. This year’s corps is the largest in Teach For America’s history. In the upcoming school year, 9,300 first- and second-year corps members will reach 600,000 students in 43 regions across 34 states and the District of Columbia, including new sites in the Appalachia region of Kentucky, Oklahoma City, Seattle, and the Pee Dee region of South Carolina.

Teach For America’s new corps members are a diverse group of top graduates of colleges and universities from across the country. One-third identify as people of color, including 12 percent who are African American and 8 percent who are Hispanic. Twenty-two percent are the first in their family to graduate from college, and nearly one-third received Pell Grants. Twenty-three percent are graduate students or professionals.

“This year’s incoming corps members represent a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences, but they share extraordinary leadership ability and a deep commitment to ensuring that all children have the opportunity to reach their fullest potential,” said Wendy Kopp, founder and CEO of Teach For America. “We are excited to be channeling the energy of such a diverse and talented corps into teaching in urban and rural public schools and into the long-term effort to achieve educational excellence and equity.”

This year, Teach For America’s talent pool was the most competitive ever: Nearly 48,000 individuals applied, and 11 percent were accepted. Applicants included 12 percent of Ivy League seniors, 10 percent of seniors at Howard University, 8 percent at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, and 5 percent at the University of Texas at Austin. Applicants represented the full range of academic majors, including math, science, and education; some with work experience from a variety of career sectors including finance, technology, military and nonprofit.

A growing body of rigorous research demonstrates the effectiveness of Teach For America corps members in the classroom. Recent studies from Louisiana, North Carolina and Tennessee found that corps members have a positive impact on student achievement. The Tennessee study identified Teach For America as the most effective of the state’s 42 teacher-preparation programs, with corps members demonstrating a greater impact on student achievement than the average new teacher in every evaluated subject area.

Teach For America is building a strong pipeline of leaders in education. Two-thirds of Teach for America alumni are working full-time in the field, with more than 550 alumni serving as school principals or school system leaders. In addition, many alumni are launching innovative efforts to expand educational opportunity. A 2011 study by Monica Higgins, Rick Hess, and their Harvard research team found that Teach For America is producing more founders and leaders of education organizations than any other organization or program.

About Teach For America

Teach For America is the national corps of outstanding recent college graduates who commit to teach for two years in urban and rural public schools and become lifelong leaders in expanding educational opportunity. This fall, 9,300 corps members will be teaching in 43 regions across the country, while nearly 24,000 Teach For America alumni continue working from inside and outside the field of education for the fundamental changes necessary to ensure educational excellence and equity. For more information, visit www.teachforamerica.org.