Virginia Teaching Scholarship Loan Program (VTSLP)
The primary purpose of the Virginia Teaching Scholarship Loan Program (VTSLP) is to provide financial support to students who are preparing to teach in one of Virginia's critical shortage teaching areas. The critical shortage teaching areas are determined annually through the Supply and Demand Survey of Administrative and Instructional Personnel, distributed to every school division in Virginia by the Department of Education. Shortages in specific subject areas are derived from the top 10 academic disciplines identified by the survey as shortage fields. See Educator Workforce Data & Reports for current critical shortage area reports.
The VTSLP application process begins early in the second semester when the Virginia Department of Education distributes VTSLP application materials to the 37 colleges and universities in Virginia with approved teacher preparation programs. Students who are eligible for the VTSLP must be nominated by the college or university to receive the award. To be eligible, students must be enrolled on a full- or part-time basis in one of the critical shortage teaching areas, be at or beyond the sophomore year (including graduate years), possess a grade point average of at least 2.7, and be identified as a domiciliary resident of Virginia. All students must return the completed application packets to the Office of Teacher Education at the college or university. Only the Dean or Director of Teacher Education may submit completed applications to the Virginia Department of Education.
A selection panel representing teachers, college and university faculty, professional organizations, and Department of Education personnel chooses recipients. Through the VTSLP, eligible students may receive a scholarship-loan for as much as $3,720, and recipients are notified individually of their selection.
Upon completion of the teacher preparation program, the scholarship recipient shall begin teaching in the public schools of the Commonwealth in the first full academic year after becoming eligible for a teaching license, and shall fulfill the teaching obligation in accordance with the Promissory Note by teaching continuously in Virginia for the same number of years that he was the beneficiary of such scholarship.
Such scholarship recipient may fulfill the teaching obligation by accepting a teaching position under contract:
- in one of the critical teacher shortage disciplines as established by the Board of Education; or
- in a career and technical education discipline; or
- regardless of teaching discipline, in a school with a high concentration of students eligible for free or reduced lunch; or
- in any discipline or at any grade level within a school division with a shortage of teachers, as defined in the Board of Education's Regulations Governing the Determination of Critical Teacher Shortage Areas; or
- in a rural or urban region of the state with a teacher shortage.
If, upon completion of the teacher preparation program, the recipient does not teach, the scholarship-loan must be paid back to the Commonwealth of Virginia.