The U.S. Department of Education today announced new awards totaling nearly $115 million to support 29 Teacher and School Leader (TSL) Incentive projects, bolstering the Department’s commitment to ensuring a well-prepared, diverse, and sustainable educator workforce.
Through Raise the Bar: Lead the World, the Department is supporting states and school districts to eliminate educator shortages in our nation’s schools. The TSL grants help districts to address educator shortages by supporting career advancement and teacher leadership opportunities, increasing compensation, and improving educator retention.
“All students benefit from a diverse and well-supported educator workforce that can prepare them to lead. While all students benefit from diverse teachers, when students of color see their backgrounds and experiences reflected in their teachers, we see higher levels of academic achievement and student engagement in school, and more students aspiring to be teachers themselves one day. That’s why attracting, retaining, and supporting a diverse educator workforce is a top priority in our efforts to Raise the Bar for learning conditions in our schools,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “This nearly $115 million investment will help states and school districts recruit and retain new talent, increase compensation, and address educator shortages that we know disproportionately impact students from our communities of color, students from low-income backgrounds, students with disabilities and English learners.”
The FY 2023 TSL grant competition prioritized activities that advance the Department’s goal of promoting educator diversity and career advancement opportunities for teachers that improve teacher retention. The funding comes at a critical point for school districts as they face significant hurdles in attracting and retaining the qualified educators and other school staff they need to best support students. These staffing challenges disproportionately impact Black and Latino students, students from low-income backgrounds, students with disabilities, and English learners.
The announcement of the awards also comes as the Department hosts the inaugural Conference on Equity in Opportunity and Teach to Lead in Denver, Colorado, where researchers, practitioners, and policy leaders will come together to discuss priorities for a diverse educator workforce, identify hurdles to building a diverse workforce, disseminate and amplify effective practices, and share information about grant funding to increase equity and access to funding opportunities.