IDEA’s Founding Teacher Fellowship

As IDEA continues to expand to new regions across the country, we want to ensure we are replicating the student success, academic rigor, and the high-quality teachers that fuel amazing results for our campus at all of our schools.

We want to ensure that IDEA’s new regions are prepared to achieve high results the first year new schools open.  We also strive to retain high-quality teachers who can help have a tremendous impact within the communities we serve, and we are committed to hiring local talent across our regions to lead and teach in schools.  We’ve also found that the most successful teachers at IDEA are often those who have experience with IDEA.

To this end, in the Spring of 2017, IDEA developed its Founding Teacher Fellowship.

Through the Founding Teachers Fellowship, dedicated individuals from IDEA’s founding regions will participate in a one-year fellowship teaching or co-teaching in some of IDEA’s award-winning Rio Grande Valley campuses.  In its first year, this fall, founding teacher fellows from El Paso, Texas, and Southern Louisiana will reside in the RGV for a year.  Fellows will receive coaching and support throughout the year and learn more about the core values, professional development, and curriculum that has made IDEA so successful in its current regions.  Each fellow will be observed and coached weekly by their campus manager, observe and work alongside their mentor teacher who they have a weekly check-in with, and attend quarterly cohort meetings where all fellows will gather as team to build, learn, and set a vision for their new region. At the end of the school year, fellows will return home to become founding teachers at a brand new IDEA school.

This fellowship will continue each year as IDEA continues to open new regions.  In 2018-2019, the fellowship will be open for future IDEA Tarrant County educators. 

Hear from some of the newest members of IDEA’s Team & Family, who are excited to work at IDEA campuses in the Rio Grande Valley for a year, in preparation for the opening of our El Paso and Southern Louisiana regions in the fall of 2018. 


Why do you want to work at IDEA?

Krystal Adams, Future IDEA El Paso Teacher, Founding Teacher Fellow, IDEA College Preparatory Alamo: “I believe IDEA Public Schools fits my educational experience. I have taught in the private school sector for more than 20 years because I believe that every child can learn if given the right opportunity. The students at Faith Christian Academy, where I have taught, receive a well-rounded education and more 90% of the graduates attend college. We have a whatever it takes philosophy to ensure that students are successful, academically and in life. I want to extend my talents outside of the private setting, to reach more students.”

Gerald Collins, Future IDEA Southern Louisiana Teacher, Founding Teacher Fellow, IDEA Academy Brownsville: “As an inner-city black youth of low socio-economic status, I know all too well the challenges that education inequity can cause for disenfranchised groups.  Each child, no matter their background, should have the ability to explore their options, find their passions, and pursue their dreams. I believe that IDEA’s vision for education equity, and my own desires to see justice in the educational system, are in sync, and for this reason I would like to join IDEA on the journey toward educational equality.”

Stephanie Clark, Future IDEA El Paso Teacher, Founding Teacher Fellow, IDEA Academy Edinburg: “I first learned about IDEA Public Schools while working with City Year in San Antonio, TX. I learned first-hand about the wonderful benefits IDEA was providing to underserved communities. I even considered applying to IDEA at the end of my City Year commitment. However, being away from home since I graduated high school, I wanted to be closer to home. I accepted a job offer with the El Paso Juvenile Probation Department as it allowed me to continue working with at-risk youth. Upon learning that IDEA Public Schools was expanding to El Paso, I immediately knew this was an opportunity I could not pass up. IDEA has demonstrated they have a proven formula that not only gets youth to graduate high school but also continue their education by pursuing a college degree. The fact that as a founding teacher I will have the responsibility to bring and instill the IDEA success formula in my very own hometown excites me.  As a founding teacher, I will have the privilege of planting the seed of IDEA Public Schools in El Paso and grow with it as we educate the area’s youth and unlock their college-bound potential under the high academic standards offered by IDEA Public Schools.”

Want to learn more about IDEA’s Founding Teacher Fellowship?  Visit


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