Our corps members earn Texas teacher certification after one year through the Teacher Orientation and Preparation Program (TOPP). TOPP is a State Board of Educator Certification-approved alternative route to teacher certification coordinated by Education Service Center, Region 20. Certification is given after corps members complete the teaching credentials requirements listed below.
Becoming Certified to Teach
- Apply to your certification partner and provide them with official transcripts from each credit-granting institute.
- If applicable, pass a Pre-Admission Content Test for your placement area.
- Pass the TExES certification content exam
- Pass any supplemental exams required for your placement area.
- Complete TFA’s summer Pre-Service experience
- Complete summer modules as assigned by your certification partner.
- Finish one full year of intern teaching with observations by your certification partner.
Although Teach For America San Antonio does not currently offer a sponsored master's degree program, some corps members successfully pursue a degree program independently
Your training begins soon after you accept your offer to join the corps and continues throughout your two-year commitment.
As a new corps member, you will go through onboarding over the course of several months as you prepare to transition into the corps. Some of your onboarding action items will be determined by your region (such as required exams, steps for your teaching certification, etc.) and others will be related to your Pre-Service training and your corps experience.
Teach For America’s Pre-Service training will prepare you to provide your students with a high-quality education, and to pursue a lifetime commitment to advancing educational equity and excellence. Throughout the summer and into the fall, you will build relationships with a network of systems-change leaders. Your learning will be focused on concepts that sit at the heart of our work, including culturally relevant pedagogy, anti-racist teacher leadership, universal design for learning, and social-emotional learning. You will engage in continuous and critical self-reflection and immediately put the lessons you learn into action in the classroom and beyond; your confidence and hunger to learn and grow will continue to increase as a first-year teacher!
You will spend a large part of your full-time training teaching students during your Practicum. The Practicum experience is led by the San Antonio team and is your first opportunity to work directly with students and families. You will put into practice the knowledge and skills you have developed through teaching students in a supportive environment. You will strengthen your relationships with your fellow corps members and staff members in San Antonio. Practicum is also a time for you to learn more about your local context and prepare for teaching in your region!
Observations and Coaching
Teach For America instructional staff will regularly observe your teaching throughout Practicum and engage you in feedback conversations. Together you’ll discuss areas for development and create concrete plans to increase student learning as you develop your teaching skills.
During the School Year
Once you begin teaching in the fall, your day-to-day life as a corps member will take place in the classroom, where you’ll primarily interact with your students and colleagues at your school. You’ll continue to receive additional teaching and leadership training and support from TFA throughout your time in the corps.
Ongoing Professional Development
The San Antonio team will continue to supplement your learning and development by offering regular professional development sessions, typically held monthly on evenings or weekends. In some cases, you may work closely with a cohort of corps members in your region who are also teaching at your school, or who are teaching the same subjects and grade levels.
Your Teaching & Leadership Coach
You will have a personal coach who will facilitate your ongoing professional development, observe your teaching on a regular basis, and provide you with feedback and guidance on improving your teaching practice. They will become one of your closest partners in helping you develop as a teacher and leader.
Tentative Training Dates:
Launch Live (virtual, full-day, synchronous programming): May 25 - 26, 2023
Welcome to Teach For America and the San Antonio Team
Pre-Service: May 30 - June 30, 2023
Hybrid model of virtual, synchronous, and in-person intensive teaching preparation, including teaching summer school to local students.
Orientation: Late July, dates TBD
Prepare you for your first days of school.
Estimated Costs for Corps Members
- Flight and transportation
- Transportation to your practicum school
- Temporary Room & Board (though some corps members will have already secured their housing for the year at this time)
- Moving expenses
Here are the coaches for this region that will support you during the corps.
- Lisa Rosales
- Nyesha Trusty
- Samia Ayyash
- Jezzette Rivera