Illinois Early Childhood Educator Policy Fellowship

Training Illinois early childhood educators to improve the ECE professions and the outcomes for our neediest students.

Teach Plus Illinois offers Early Childhood Educator Policy Fellowships to outstanding Early Childhood Educators in the state looking to deepen their knowledge of education policy and gain a voice in decisions that directly affect students and the teaching profession.

What is the Illinois Early Childhood Educator Policy Fellowship?

  • A highly selective leadership opportunity for outstanding Illinois Early Childhood Educators looking to deepen their knowledge of education policy and gain a voice in decisions that affect students and the Early Childhood Education world.
  • Fellows expand their influence without leaving the classroom.
  • Monthly Fellows Sessions (virtual and in-person)
  • Fellows receive training through expert-led modules and direct engagement with key stakeholders. No prior policy experience required.
  • Fellows receive a stipend for their commitment.
Five teachers of color pose for photo

What Does Teach Plus Do?

Teach Plus trains teachers in understanding education policy as a lever for student success, community organizing, writing op-eds and speaking to the media, providing public testimony, and more. Teach Plus works to create and connect teachers to opportunities to lead in real ways at the policy level.

How Does It Work?

Teach Plus recruits and selects Early Childhood Educator Policy Fellows from across the state to participate in the cohort experience. You will become part of a larger movement of teacher leadership and help mobilize your peers around top issues impacting the early childhood education profession in Illinois. Teach Plus works with key stakeholders and policymakers to join the conversation.

Nationally and locally, Teach Plus Policy Fellows have:

  • Met with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office.
  • Advocated for Illinois’ historic education funding reform law by meeting with lawmakers, organizing teachers throughout the state, and by holding a rally in Springfield.
  • Advocated for pay parity for early childhood educators and teacher voice to be included in decisions around the IL ECEC Funding Commission.
  • Spoke at conferences in Illinois including EduColor, ECET2, an SB100 conference, and the IEA Representative Assembly.
  • Illinois teachers have been published or featured in US News & World Report, Education Week, the Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times, the Springfield Journal-Register, and on Chicago Tonight on WTTW. 

Know a teacher leader?

Nominate a teacher who wants to achieve change in their schools and in the broader education system.

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Meet our Teacher Leaders

Get to know the Illinois Policy Fellowship teachers.

Teacher Voices