From the Superintendent: New St. Thomas Partnership Offers Graduate Opportunities for Staff

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Colleagues:

Our district is blessed with thousands of talented people who excel at working with our students. Many of these staff members have four-year college degrees but, for a variety of reasons, haven’t pursued graduate education or teacher licensure.

I am delighted to share news about a new partnership between SPPS and the University of St. Thomas (UST). The SPPS Urban Teacher Residency, or SUTR, will provide an opportunity to non-licensed staff who have their bachelor’s degree and have completed their probationary period.* 

The goal of SUTR is to recruit, prepare and retain effective teachers who look like our students. In only 15 months, program participants will be able to earn both a Minnesota teaching license and a master’s degree from UST, with coursework and co-teaching during the day -- not at night or on weekends. Teachers receiving credentials through SUTR will receive hiring preference for SPPS jobs.

SPPS will provide a stipend of $22,500 to each SUTR participant. Participants may apply for scholarships (UST offers scholarship of $3,000 to $8,000), and may also qualify for federal student loan forgiveness while teaching, worth $5,000 to $17,500. Find out more information at our upcoming sessions:

  • Financial Aid - Wednesday, March 16, at Hazel Park at 1140 White Bear Ave., St Paul, MN 55106 from 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm.
  • General Information - Wednesday, March 23, at 360 Colborne (Room K) from 5 p.m. - 6 p.m.

This is a truly remarkable opportunity for SPPS staff to increase their earning potential and earn a graduate degree. Even better, it will enable SPPS to “grow our own” -- to advance the careers of people who already know the district, and who have unique capacity to reflect the dreams and desires of our beautifully diverse students.

I urge you to find out more about SUTR on the Office of Leadership Development website before the application deadline on March 31.

Your very proud Superintendent,

Silva Signature


Valeria Silva


*Pending the submission and requisite review and approval of the University of St. Thomas programs by the Minnesota Board of Teaching.