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Grants and Residencies for Fellows

Grants are available to Fellows of The Academy for Teachers. Current grants include artist residencies at Foundation House and The Don Quixote Fellowship.

Artist Residency for Teachers

The Academy for Teachers understands how hard it is for teachers who are also working artists to find the space and time to be creative. We are thrilled, therefore, that Foundation House has partnered with us and will host eight teachers for an artist residency of ten days this summer. Residents will be provided housing, three meals a day, and the ability to pursue their art in a supportive, safe, and undisturbed environment.

Learn more

Don Quixote Fellowship

When teachers are inspired, students benefit. The Don Quixote Fellowships supports idealistic, romantic, creative, impractical, adventurous projects born of teachers’ passions. Awards up to $5,000 are granted.

Projects can, but need not, be related to classroom practice: a science teacher might study Inuit poetry in Alaska or a pre-K teacher might carve a fifteen-foot marble sculpture. We are looking for applicants who use ingenuity in planning an original experience.

Academy Fellow Sarah Murphy in Scotland.

2024 Don Quixote Fellows

This year, the Academy is proud to provide twice the fellowships to teachers, thanks to a partnership with Incite Institute at Columbia University. These first Don Quixote Incite Fellows ∆ have exciting work to do, and we're pleased to be working with them and the Incite Institute.

Incite is an interdisciplinary institute at Columbia University. They produce knowledge for public action. They do so by joining with people and organizations within and outside the university to rethink our understanding of what knowledge is, how it’s created, and how it can be used.

Academy Fellow Brian Carey
Brian Carey ∆
Robert F. Wagner, Jr. Secondary School for Arts and Technology, teaching 20 years, The Human Question

Brian Carey, a Rochester native, moved to New York City in 1999 for graduate studies in philosophy. Since 2003, he’s taught English, music, and visual art at the Robert F. Wagner, Jr. Secondary School. Domestic Harmony is a traveling recording project that brings people who inhabit the same physical community—but occupy different social, cultural, political, religious, or economic realities—together in a shared love of singing. The idea is simple: bring two different people who love the same song together and, with the aid of experienced musicians, American folk instruments, and professional recording processes, create an enduring document of a shared human moment.

Academy Fellow Rhonda Creed-Harry
Rhonda Creed-Harry ∆
Urban Academy Laboratory High School, teaching 21 years, Problem Solving, Math Workshop, Geometry

Rhonda Creed-Harry is an NYC public educator and STEAM specialist passionate about connecting students with math, science, and the arts. She believes in shared wisdom and storytelling experience, and has a background that includes teaching yoga, urban gardening, media studies, crafting, and financial literacy. Her project will document personal stories of human connection to plants and herbalism studies, along with a workshop experience. It embodies beliefs that education should be a holistic process, and learning about nature can foster a deeper understanding of ourselves and our place in the world, nurturing not just the mind, but also the heart and spirit.

Academy Fellow Jennifer Kaplan
Jennifer Kaplan
Bard High School Early College Queens, teaching 12 years, World Literature, Childhood in Literature, Fairy Tales Then and Now, Arabic, Arabic Literature, The 1001 Nights, Antiquity and the Middle Ages, Revolutionary Thought of the 19th and 20th Centuries

Jennifer Kaplan is from San Francisco, and has studied in Berkeley, Tunis, and Cairo among other places. She is currently a faculty member at Bard High School Early College Queens, where she teaches a wide variety of courses, including world literature, Arabic, Arabic literature, childhood in literature, and fairy tales. Jennifer loves to combine literary experiences with other arts and pleasures. Her project seeks to bring together calligraphy, stories from the archives of the Bibliotheque Nationale, and selkie lore in a series of fabric art pieces that currently exist only in her imagination.

Academy Fellow Keira Lapsley
Keira Lapsley
Ethical Culture Fieldston School, teaching 25 years, Ancient Civilizations

Keira Lapsley has been an educator for twenty-five years; for the past twelve years, she has been the middle-school history department chair and an eighth-grade history teacher at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School. In addition, Keira is also an empowerment coach and an antiracism and equity education consultant. She enjoys spending time with her children, partner, and friends, as well as listening to music, reading, and consuming wellness podcasts. Keira will spend a week in South Carolina and Georgia to immerse in Gullah Geechee culture and history, examining the African influences of rice farming, indigo production, crafts, culinary traditions, and more.

Academy Fellow Emily Moore
Emily Moore
Stuyvesant High School, teaching 22 years, Foundations of Literature, Poetry Workshop

Emily Moore is the author of the chapbook Shuffle, a CUNY Grad Center PhD, an amateur ukulele songwriter, and the creator of @OutcomeOngoing, an Instagram cartoon about the hilarious subject of pandemic breast cancer. Her Don Quixote dream is to rent the Brooklyn Poets’ June Jordan salon for a late August evening to launch and distribute a small collection of multimedia chapbooks and broadsides about teaching and surviving these past four years, and to provide a celebratory space for friends to share their own paper projects.

Academy Fellow Alexis Pajares
Alexis Pajares
Liberation Diploma Plus High School, teaching 20 years, Global History, Art History, Participation in Government

Alex Pajares has been an NYC teacher since 2003, teaching mainly global history, art history, and Spanish in some of the most challenging and underserved communities in New York. For the last two years, he has spent weekends working with newly arrived migrant children as a bilingual teacher. In addition to being a teacher of history, Alex is also a dedicated cyclist and serious photographer. During his fellowship, Alex will travel to Rapa Nui (Easter Island) to experience and photograph the island and learn how communication systems separate from the Western tradition developed in that part of the world.

Fellows

Bread Loaf School of English Scholarship

The Academy for Teachers is modeled on The Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College, where passionate students, most of them teachers, take inspiring classes in a beautiful mountain setting. Full scholarships, offered jointly by the Academy and Bread Loaf, will be awarded to Fellows of the Academy for Teachers who share a passion for literature, a love of creativity, and a devotion to teaching. We hope that six weeks among kindred spirits—reading, discussing, writing, playing—will send them into the next school year rejuvenated.

A green and yellow building at the Middlebury Bread Loaf School of English.
Scholars

Help us keep great teachers in the classroom

Teachers, our most valuable resource, are struggling. Overwhelmed and under-supported, too many teachers leave the profession too soon. The Academy’s enriching experiences and supportive community have been proven to improve those odds.

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