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Frequently Asked Questions About TEACH Grants

Who can qualify for the TEACH Grant?

Students accepted into the Undergraduate and Graduate Teacher Education Program at Cal U who have at least a 3.25 GPA and are majoring in the following high-need subject areas:

  •         Science
  •         Mathematics
  •         Foreign Language
  •         Special Education
  •         Reading Specialist

Click here for a complete listing of TEACH eligible majors at Cal U.

Do I have to demonstrate financial need to qualify for the TEACH Grant?

No, you only need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year that you receive the TEACH Grant.

Can only undergraduate students qualify for this award?

No, both undergraduate and graduate teacher education majors can qualify for a TEACH Grant.

What are the teacher service obligations associated with the TEACH Grant?

You must be a highly qualified, full-time teacher in a high-need subject area for at least four years at a school serving low-income students (Title I institution). You must complete the four years of teaching within eight years of finishing the program for which you received the grant. You will incur a four-year teaching obligation for each educational program for which you received TEACH Grant funds, although you may work off multiple four-year obligations simultaneously under certain circumstances.

What is an eligible Title I elementary and secondary school?

You must teach at a Title I school that serves low-income students. Schools serving low-income students include any elementary or secondary school that is listed in the U.S. Department of Education's Annual Directory of Designated Low-Income Schools for Teacher Cancellation Benefits.

Where and how often do I complete the "Agreement to Serve?"

The Agreement to Serve (ATS) must be completed each year before receiving a TEACH Grant. The agreement is a legally binding agreement that defines the teaching obligations under this grant. To complete the ATS, you must go to the U.S. Department of Education TEACH website and click on "My ATS." Once you have completed the ATS, Cal U will be notified that you have completed this requirement. Once all eligibility requirements are satisfied, the TEACH Grant will be credited to your student account.

What happens if I change my major from one of the eligible high-need subject areas to an ineligible major after receiving the TEACH Grant?

The total amount that you received from the TEACH Grant (both current and prior amounts) must be repaid as a Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan with interest accrued from the date the grant funds were first disbursed. Changing to an ineligible major will create a significant financial penalty for you! 

How much can I receive from the TEACH Grant?

Eligible undergraduate and graduate students can receive up to $4,000 per year for a total of $16,000 for undergraduate study and up to $ 8,000 for graduate study. In addition, part-time students are eligible, but the grant will be reduced based on the student's enrollment status.

What will happen if I do not fulfill the teacher service obligations of TEACH Grant?

If you fail to complete the four-year teaching obligation at an eligible Title I institution for at least four years during an eight-year period, you will be required to repay the grant with accrued interest.

What happens if I am unable to secure a teaching position at the Title I school?

Unfortunately, this is a requirement of the TEACH Grant. If you fail to TEACH at least four years at an eligible Title I institution, your grant will revert to a Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. No exceptions.

What happens if I temporarily cease enrollment in a TEACH Grant eligible major?

If you temporarily cease enrollment in your program of study, or if you encounter situations that affect your ability to begin or continue teaching, you will need to stay in touch with the U.S. Department of Education in order to prevent the grant from being converted to a Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan before you are able to complete your teaching obligation. 

When and how is TEACH Grant exit counseling completed?

Under the TEACH Grant regulations, a student who has received a TEACH Grant is required to complete TEACH Grant exit counseling before he or she leaves school, at a time determined by the school.

The Department of Education now offers an online TEACH Grant exit counseling session for TEACH Grant recipients. However, unlike TEACH Grant initial and subsequent counseling, a student is not required to complete the required exit counseling by means of the Department's online TEACH Grant exit counseling. Under the TEACH Grant regulations, a school is responsible for ensuring that exit counseling is completed by a student. In ensuring that the counseling is completed, a school may choose, but again is not required to use, Department-offered resources. In addition to the online TEACH Grant exit counseling, the Department also has a TEACH Grant Exit Counseling Guide on the TEACH Grant web site that a school may use to supplement the required counseling.