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Learn more about the process for becoming certified to teach in the Nashville-Chattanooga region.

Becoming Certified to Teach

Certification Requirements

We partner with two certifying bodies, Lipscomb University and Relay Graduate School of Education.  Please note that some school placements require corps members to attend one certifying partner or the other.  More information will come as the hiring season progresses.

In order to be qualified to teach, Nashville-Chattanooga corps members must complete the following requirements:

  • Pass content-specific Praxis exams prior to and during the school year.
  • Take a minimum of two semesters of courses offered through our university partner, Lipscomb University, in order to receive a transitional teaching license OR participate in Relay Graduate School of Education’s certification program*.
  •  Corps members who teach SPED are required to earn a Master’s over a 2-year period

Lipscomb University courses are specifically designed by the university, in collaboration with Teach For America, to meet the needs of corps members.

Relay GSE’s program is a unique, rigorous teacher training program designed specifically to respond to today’s urgent demand for effective teachers in low-income communities.

*Certification requirement varies based on placement site. Corps members must complete all licensure requirements through our certification partners.

Master's Degree Option

Corps members have the option to earn a Master’s Degree in Education from Lipscomb University or a Master’s of Arts in Teaching from Relay Graduate School of Education. 

Nashville-Chattanooga Required Training


Institute is a mandatory six-week experience in which corps members engage in intensive professional development and teacher training while teaching summer school to students across the city. 

Leadership Summit

Each year corps members are required to participate in leadership summit, a full-day training session where corps members receive professional development focused on growing them as leaders both inside and out of the classroom.

Justice Journey

The Justice Journey is a week of experiential learning. During this time corps members will learn the story of the Nashville and Chattanooga communities, its unique beauty and struggle, and the motivations of those who lead here. The Justice Journey experience is a powerful catalyst for participants to bring their unique perspectives, backgrounds, and identities to the group and support each other by challenging, renewing, re-energizing, and reconnecting to their purpose and impact.