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June 15 , 2007 :: Math, Science Teachers Receive $11,000 for Completing Incentive Program

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Twenty-five Oklahoma teachers will receive more than $11,000 thanks to a legislative program that rewards Oklahoma math and science teachers.

The Teacher Shortage Employment Incentive Program (TSEIP) recently announced that 25 math and science teachers will each receive $11,148 for completing their five-year agreements. TSEIP is administered by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.

The award for teachers who complete a TSEIP agreement increased by approximately $800 in February 2007.

State lawmakers created TSEIP in 2000 as part of Oklahoma’s push to attract and retain more teachers in math and science. The program reimburses student loan expenses for eligible students who sign up for the program while in college and who agree to teach math or science in an Oklahoma secondary school for at least five years.

After completing their first five years of teaching, participants return documents to TSEIP, and the incentive is applied toward eligible student loans. Any money left over after the teachers’ student loan expenses have been paid will be given to the individual teachers. For those teachers who do not have any loans to repay, they will instead receive the full amount of the cash award.

To date, 67 teachers have completed TSEIP and received the award. This year’s recipients are currently teaching in schools representing every region of the state.

Chancellor Glen D. Johnson said the program helps the state keep its teachers in Oklahoma and improves math and science scores statewide.

“TSEIP is a valuable program, especially when our state and nation are trying to remain competitive with other countries around the world that are producing more college graduates in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math,” Johnson said. “Our hope is that more students will participate in TSEIP and teach these important fields to Oklahoma students.”

Every Oklahoma college and university that has a teacher education program, including many independent institutions, participates in TSEIP.

Students interested in learning more about TSEIP should contact the education department at their respective college or university or visit the TSEIP Web site at www.cashforteachingok.org. They may also contact the State Regents Teacher Education Program toll free at 800.858.1840 or e-mail kdahlem@osrhe.edu.