SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Veritas Prep Charter School (VPCS) has been awarded $53,883 from the Massachusetts Teacher Diversification Pilot Program, a state-funded grant program that provides approximately $2 million in competitive funding to support local school and district efforts to strengthen and diversify existing teacher recruitment and retention programs. VPCS is using this grant to establish the Veritas Prep Teacher Diversification Fellowship Fund to help educators and aspiring educators who identify as people of color enter or remain in education by removing common financial barriers.
Candidates can apply for access to funding for education, MTEL test fees, relocation assistance and tuition and loan reimbursement. New and current associate teachers and lead teachers are eligible to apply, and Teach Western Mass (TWM) residents can also apply for TWM tuition coverage. Recipients must commit to working at Veritas Prep middle or high school for three years. All recipients will receive access to free MTEL test preparation, if applicable.
“Veritas is working to become an anti-racist organization, and as we continue to move this work forward, we strive to recruit and retain a diverse teaching staff and to create a school community where all teachers feel safe, heard and valued,” said Romano. “We know that representation matters for the success of all students and especially our students of color.”
Launched in April 2019, the Massachusetts Teacher Diversification Pilot Program provides tuition assistance to support enrollment into an approved-educator preparation program and MTEL preparation and examination. Schools and districts may also use grant funds to enhance teacher recruitment and retention efforts.
“Teachers of color often experience barriers to entering and remaining in the teaching profession, and as we work to remove some of those barriers within our school by creating an anti-racist community, we know that there are external financial barriers that can also affect recruitment and retention,” said Romano. “We hope that by creating a diverse, inclusive, anti-racist organization and offering financial assistance through the Diversification Fellowship Fund, we can continue to improve experiences and outcomes for students, teachers and staff.”
Educators and aspiring educators who identify as people of color can learn more about the Veritas Teacher Diversification Fellowship Fund and apply for support here: veritasprepma.org/teacher-diversification-fund/.
About Veritas Prep Charter School
Veritas Prep Charter School (VPCS) was founded in Springfield in 2012 with the mission to prepare students in grades 5-8 to compete, achieve, and succeed in high school, college, and beyond. VPCS now serves more than 370 Springfield students and is one of Massachusetts’ top-performing middle schools. Building on the success of VPCS, Friends of Veritas Prep partnered with the Holyoke Public Schools, launching Veritas Prep Holyoke (VPH) in 2018 as part of Holyoke’s innovative turnaround efforts. VPH is a neighborhood enrollment school currently serving grades 5 through 8. In 2020, VPCS was approved to open a high school, which will welcome its inaugural 9th-grade class in 2022. To learn more visit veritasprepma.org.