Summer Teaching Fellow
Uncommon Schools - New York, NY

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The Summer Teaching Fellowship (STF) is designed to introduce college juniors to teaching and urban education reform through hands-on experience in Uncommon’s classrooms and tailored professional development opportunities. Fellows develop the skills necessary for leading high-achieving urban classrooms across Uncommon’s networks through the mentorship, collaboration, and hands-on experience STF provides. A high priority of STF is to promote the diversity of the teaching staffs at Uncommon Schools, and thus we are committed to recruiting fellows from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds.

Fellows come from college campuses across the US. As a fellow, you will work and teach in one of Uncommon’s schools with the support of a mentor teacher and STF staff. You will also engage in professional development sessions 3-4 evenings per week. To build cohort community, fellows take part in a range of fun social and cultural events together. Two – ten fellows will be placed at each host school location.

Summer Teaching Fellows observe, learn from, and co-teach with mentor teachers. Each fellow supports their mentor teacher by tutoring, grading, and leading individual or small group student instruction. Fellows progress to leading instruction for a full class of students, allowing for direct teaching experience still with the support and guidance of a mentor. Fellows will also assist with a variety of work inside and outside of the classroom, including organizing student events, conferencing with families, developing mentoring relationships with students, and assisting with the set-up of classrooms for summer school. Through full participation in summer professional development, as well as regular meetings with their mentor, Fellows will have many opportunities to gain the experience and support necessary to develop their teaching skills. By the end of the summer, Summer Teaching Fellows will be very strong candidates for full-time teaching positions to begin after completion of their senior year.

STF currently offers placements in Newark (high school), New York City (elementary and middle school) and Boston (middle school). Applicants should list their top two choices of location on the application.

  • Report to STF host school Monday through Friday, 7:30am – 4pm for the duration of the program;

  • Observe mentor teacher and other teachers in order to improve instructional techniques and classroom management;

  • Teach, and tutor small groups of students with the support of the mentor teacher;

  • Engage in all aspects of host school culture;

  • Attend professional development sessions 2-3 evenings per week. Sessions are designed to develop Fellows’ teaching abilities and increase their knowledge of issues in education;

  • Actively engage in cohort group meetings and discussions designed to share and generate ideas around urban education reform.


  • Current standing as a junior in college (undergraduate level) and expected to graduate in Spring 2014 (note: if you are in a 5 year program and are graduating in Spring 2015, please apply for STF next year);

  • Available to participate early June to late July for Boston and New York City; mid-June to early August for Newark;

  • 3.0 GPA or higher in concentration/major;

  • U.S. citizen or legally eligible to work in the U.S.;

  • Drive to improve the minds and lives of students in and out of the classroom;

  • Evidence of self-motivation, willingness to be a team player, and strong sense of personal responsibility;

  • Hard-working, punctual, urgent, energetic, and willing to learn and adapt;

  • Extremely self-reflective and constant desire to improve;

  • Strong organizational skills, communication skills (with children and with peers), and problem solving skills;

  • Prior experience working in schools and/or urban communities is preferred but not required.


A background or major in education is not required, though candidates should show a demonstrated passion for working with K-12 students.


The program runs from early June and concludes in late July for Boston and New York City; and from mid-June to early August for Newark. For the seven - eight week cycle, fellows receive a stipend of $3,500 - $4,000 and unlimited access to public transportation. Housing is also provided: fellows have the option of dormitory-style housing provided by Uncommon Schools or may opt to receive a stipend to offset the costs of independent housing. Meals are provided at all mandatory professional development sessions. Fellows may have the opportunity to visit schools in other regions and transportation and meals will be provided during these trips.

If, after reviewing the website, you feel that you have the desire and skills to be a Summer Teaching Fellow, please take the time to complete and submit your application by March 1, 2013. Please note: Unfortunately, you will not be able to save answers as you go along. Please take this into consideration. You are welcome to open the application, copy and paste the questions into a Word Document, and then copy and paste your answers into our application once they are complete. Thanks in advance for the time you are taking to apply to Uncommon Schools.

tional YOUTUBE video response

In addition to the following written responses, we encourage you to submit an optional video response addressing the question listed below. By electing to complete the video response, you will allow the selection committee the opportunity to gain a better understanding of your communication skills. Please note that it is not a required component of the application.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?

The video can be up to 2 1/2 minutes in length. To submit, please post as a youtube video and email the link to after completing the online application, subject “STF 2012 Video Response."

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The 2013 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools, Uncommon is a nonprofit network of public charter schools in New York, New Jersey and...