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Frequently Asked Questions - TEACH Grant Service Obligation

Each year that you receive a TEACH Grant, you must sign an Agreement to Serve or Repay and TEACH Grant Counseling on the U.S Department of Education TEACH Grant website. The TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve or Repay and TEACH Grant Counseling explains the terms and conditions of the service obligation you must agree to fulfill as a condition for receiving a TEACH Grant. By signing the Agreement to Serve or Repay and completing Counseling, you agree to these terms and conditions and acknowledge your understanding that if you do not fulfill the service obligation, the TEACH Grant funds you received will be converted to a loan that you must repay.

As a condition for receiving a TEACH Grant, you must teach
-in a high-need field;
-at an elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency that serves students from low-income families; and
-for at least four complete academic years within eight years after completing (or ceasing enrollment in) the course of study for which you received the grant.

High need fields include:
-bilingual education and English language acquisition,
-foreign language,
-mathematics,
-reading specialist,
-science, and
-special education, as well as
-any other field that has been identified as high-need by the federal government, a state government, or a local education agency, and that is included in the annual Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide Listing (Nationwide List). </li> </ul>

As a condition for receiving a TEACH Grant, you must teach for at least four complete academic years within eight years after completing (or ceasing enrollment in) the course of study for which you received the grant.

Additionally, you must also teach at an elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency that serves students from low-income families; and teach in a high-need field.

To keep the money as a grant, you must meet all the criteria, including teaching in a 'high-need field'. The TEACH Grant Program provides up to $4,000 a year in grant assistance to a student who agrees to serve for at least four years as a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families. Please note: The TEACH Grant maximum award amount is impacted by sequestration each academic year. This can result in an increase or decrease in the TEACH Grant amount you will receive due to the scheduled percentage reduction determined by the Budget Control Act of 2011.

Yes, that could happen because the elementary classroom is not considered a “high-need field”. However, a special education elementary classroom is considered an area of high need. It will be your responsibility to choose a position that meets the service agreement requirements.

To keep the money as a grant, you must meet all the criteria of your service obligations described in your agreement to serve.

If you do not meet the requirements of your service obligation, all TEACH Grants you received will be converted to Federal Direct Unsubsidized loans. You must repay these loans in full, with interest charged from the date of each TEACH Grant disbursement.

Elementary and secondary schools (public and private) and educational service agencies serving low-income students are listed in the annual Teacher Cancellation Low-Income Directory. In addition, elementary or secondary schools operated by the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) or operated on Indian reservations by Indian tribal groups under contract or grant with the BIE qualify as low-income schools.

If you have questions about your TEACH Grant converting to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan or about meeting TEACH Grant requirements contact the TEACH Grant servicer, FedLoan Servicing, at 1-800-699-2908 from 8 a.m.–9 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday.

TEACH Grant is a nationwide program; you may perform your service obligation in any state. You must be a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families.

Yes, you must teach at least four years as a full-time teacher within an eight year period of time.

The interest on your converted grant starts accruing from the original disbursement date of the grant.

You must teach at least four years as a full-time teacher within an eight year period of time.

No, you must be a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families.