The Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program

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10.03.2020
The Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program

The Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (Fulbright TEA) is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The Fulbright program was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by former United States Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. Fulbright grants are awarded to students, scholars, teachers and other professionals from the United States and to foreign nationals to study, teach, or conduct research. Since its inception in 1946, more than 370,000 “Fulbrighters” have participated in the Fulbright program.

The 2020-2021 program will mark the twenty-fourth year of the Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (formerly the Teaching Excellence Awards program) and the third year the program will be known as the Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program.

Teachers are nominated to participate in the Fulbright TEA Program based on their educational experience, academic training, leadership and professional experience. Final selection of Fulbright TEA teachers is made by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB). The FFSB is an independent, presidentially appointed board that has oversight responsibility for all Fulbright academic exchange programs.

Program Components

Teachers who are selected to participate in the Fulbright TEA Program will:

1) Participate in advanced undergraduate or graduate level classes at a U.S. host university.

2) Observe classes, co-teach, and share their expertise with U.S. colleagues in U.S. secondary schools.

3) Participate in an online professional learning community with other participants to share best practices and other elements of host and home country educational systems; and

4) Take part in other education and cultural activities while on program in the United States.

Upon returning home, teachers will be expected to share the knowledge and experience gained on the program with teachers and students in their home schools and within their communities.

Fulbright TEA:

  • Provides approximately 177 international secondary school teachers with professional development to enhance their expertise in their disciplines and provide them with a deeper understanding of best practices in education.
  • Contributes to improving education in participating countries and communities by preparing participants to serve as even stronger educational leaders who are equipped to apply and share their experience and skills with their colleagues and students upon returning home.
  • Promotes mutual understanding between educators, participants’ schools, and communities in the United States and abroad.

University Coursework:

Weekly Seminars: Teachers will participate in weekly seminars at their host university featuring presentations and discussions led by university staff, faculty members, and invited educational experts. The academic seminars will focus on new teaching methodologies, content-based instruction, project-based learning, infusing thematic topics into curriculum, lesson planning, and instructional technology training for teachers.

U.S. School Placements: Teachers will be placed in a U.S. secondary school during the U.S. program, where they will observe classes, co-teach, and share their expertise and information about their home countries and schools. Each Fulbright teacher will be paired with a U.S. partner educator at their assigned school to facilitate sharing of best practices between the teachers. Host university staff will identify schools and partner teachers near the university campus that are appropriate to each grantee’s teaching discipline(s).

Online Professional Learning Community: Each Fulbright teacher will participate in a virtual community with other international educators to collaborate and share best practices about education and leadership in the participating countries.

Logistical Information

Travel: IREX will make international travel arrangements and provide all teachers with an international airline ticket. Fulbright teachers will also be reimbursed for round-trip travel expenses between their home city and the point of departure for the United States; however, participants are responsible for making these domestic travel arrangements to and from the international airport. Fulbright teachers may travel after the end of their program during the thirty-day grace period of the J-1 visa, provided that all conditions in the Terms and Conditions are met.

Housing: Participants will live on or near the host university campus in housing that is arranged for them. Dependents are not permitted to accompany the teachers on the program.

Finances: Each Fulbright teacher will receive a maintenance allowance during the program to cover expenses such as supplies for classes, household items, personal items, medical co-payments, and cultural and other activities. Also included in this total is a daily stipend to purchase groceries, meals at local restaurants, or food from on-campus dining services. Costs associated with housing, required program activities, and other program-related expenses are paid in advance by the Fulbright TEA Program and may vary by host university.

The fellowship provides:

  • J-1 visa support
  • A Pre-Departure Orientation (PDO) held in participant’s home country or territory
  • Round-trip airfare to and within the U.S.
  • An orientation workshop at the start of the program in the U.S.
  • Academic program fees (paid directly to the host institution)
  • Housing (generally shared with other participants) and meals
  • Accident and sickness medical coverage (does not cover pre-existing conditions)
  • Transportation to local schools (if necessary)
  • A daily allowance for incidentals during the university academic program
  • A baggage allowance

Fulbright TEA Selection Criteria

  • Commitment to secondary education;
  • Leadership potential;
  • Professional and educational experience and achievements;
  • Potential for developing long-term linkages between U.S. and home country educational institutions and schools;
  • Preparedness (including maturity, flexibility, and ability to function independently) for an intensive S. based training program;
  • Willingness and capacity to work and live collaboratively with international peers to foster a positive learning community for professional development;
  • Ideas for applying program experience to improving secondary education in Belarus upon return;
  • Ability to express ideas clearly and effectively;
  • English language skills adequate to manage coursework, develop lesson plans, and team-teach in U.S. schools.

Applicants must:

  • Be full-time teachers of English, English as a Foreign Language (EFL), math, science, or social studies, including special education teachers in those subjects at institutions serving primarily a local population;
  • Have earned a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent education and experience;
  • Have five or more years of full-time teaching experience at the start of the program;
  • Be citizen of and resident in Belarus;
  • Earn a minimum score of 450 on the paper-based TOEFL;
  • Demonstrate a commitment to continue teaching after completion of the program;
  • Submit a complete application.

Program Dates

Spring 2021

November-December 2020: Pre-Departure Orientation: Prior to arrival in the United States, the U.S. Embassy will conduct a Pre-Departure Orientation for Spring 2020 teachers.

Late-January-mid-March 2021: Fulbright teachers take part in the program in the United States.

Fall 2021

June- July 2021: Pre-Program Departure Orientation: Prior to arrival in the United States, the U.S. Embassy will conduct a Pre-Departure Orientation for Fall 2020 teachers.

September-late October 2021: Fulbright teachers take part in their program in the United States.

How to Apply

Country Application deadline: April 12, 2020

The online application is available at: www.fulbrightteacherexchanges.org

and https://www.irex.org/fulbright-tea

For more information about Fulbright TEA please contact U.S. Embassy in Minsk at belarusprogram@state.gov or IREX at fulbrighttea@irex.org

We look forward to receiving your application!

https://by.usembassy.gov/education-culture/educational-exchange/