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Illinois Teaching Policy Fellowship

Illinois Teaching Policy Fellowship

Training teachers as advocates to ensure that Illinois teachers and students thrive

What is the Illinois State Teaching Policy Fellowship?

  • A highly selective leadership opportunity for outstanding Illinois teachers looking to deepen their knowledge of education policy and gain a voice in decisions that affect students and the teaching profession. 
  • Fellows expand their influence without leaving the classroom, starting in August 2017 and concluding in June 2018.  
  • Four in-person training sessions, and online monthly virtual sessions
  • Fellows receive training through expert-led modules and direct engagement with key stakeholders. No prior policy experience required 
  • Fellows receive a $1,200 stipend for their commitment

What do we do?

Teach Plus trains teachers in: understanding education policy as a lever for student success, community organizing, writing op-eds and speaking to the media, providing public testimony, and more. Teach Plus works to create and connect teachers to opportunities to lead in real ways at the policy level.

How does it work?

Teach Plus recruits and selects Illinois Teaching Policy Fellows from across the state to participate in the cohort experience. You will become part of a larger movement of teacher leadership and help mobilize your peers around top issues impacting the teaching profession in Illinois. Teach Plus works with key stakeholders and policymakers to join the conversation.

Teach Plus Policy Fellows have:

  • Met with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office
  • Shaped the Illinois plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act
  • Joined Former Secretary of Education Arne Duncan as part of the  U.S. Department of Education’s official delegation to the International Summit on the Teaching Profession
  • Been published in Education Week, the Chicago Tribune, the State-Journal Register, the Herald Tribune, and have appeared on PBS Television and National Public Radio


  • I am a current teacher of record with at least two full years of teaching experience by August 2017
  • I have a track record of success teaching students in Illinois 
  • I am ready to dedicate my time and passion to learning about policy and advocating on behalf of changes that impact my students

Application Process

Part 1 – Written Application
The written application asks you to complete general demographic information, short responses and provide contact information for two professional references (letters of reference are not required.) Applications are due June 2nd.

Part 2 – Interview 
You will be notified if you have been invited to participate in an interview. 

Part 3 – Selection
You will be notified if you have been selected to join the Illinois Teaching Policy Fellowship. If accepted, you will commit to attending the kick-off convening (exact date TBD) and monthly sessions throughout the fellowship.