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Pathways to PE — Physical Education in NYC’s Elementary Schools

The Pathways to PE application for the 2018 program has closed. To create an account and be notified when a new application opens, please click here. ​

Through an unprecedented City Hall commitment to Physical Education (PE) under the PE Works initiative, the New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE) is leading the nation in revitalizing quality PE, especially at the elementary level, with an infusion of certified PE teachers to provide quality instruction and lead health and wellness efforts in schools with grades K-5. An investment to hire more than 500 new certified elementary PE teachers by 2019 ensures all elementary students learn about their bodies, how to take care of them, and how to move. We’re looking for aspiring PE teseachers who are passionate about teaching students the skills and benefits of setting individual fitness goals, being good team players, and becoming part of a health-focused school community.

Now in its second year, the alternative certification program, Pathways to PE, is designed to recruit and train committed individuals with a demonstrated interest in fitness and education to become fully-certified PE teachers in NYC DOE schools by September 2018.

Benefits

Here are some of the great benefits available to Pathways to PE participants:

  • Make a lasting impact on New York City students. PE is an important academic subject that teaches students to be physically active, work as a team, and set fitness goals that can last a lifetime. Emerging research shows that students who are more physically active in school also perform better in the classroom.
  • Practical school-based preparation. Across the city, high-quality PE teachers are eager to open up their classrooms to aspiring Pathways to PE participants to learn alongside them. Participants will gain exposure to best practices of PE instruction and acquire hands-on experience with NYC DOE students.
  • Continue your education. Pathways to PE participants will matriculate into a Master's degree program in Physical Education at Brookyn College, engage in over 40 hours of skill-building sessions facilitated by teacher preparation experts, and participate in citywide learning opportunities offered specifically for PE teachers.
  • Join a network of dedicated professionals. The NYC DOE’s 75,000 teachers are passionate, goal-oriented, and committed to students’ success. Once hired, Pathways to PE participants are entitled to all NYC DOE employee benefits, United Federation of Teachers (UFT) membership benefits, and the benefits associated with collaborating with the NYC DOE’s Office of School Wellness Programs. There are numerous opportunities for growth, continuous learning, and leadership available to NYC DOE educators throughout their careers.

Timeline of Program

Training

Pathways to PE prepares aspiring PE teachers through the following components:

  • A multi-week immersion in an established PE teacher’s classroom for observation, hands-on experience, and exposure to high quality PE instruction
  • Skill-building sessions from the NYCDOE’s Office of Teacher Recruitment and Quality Training team
  • Content-specific trainings from the NYCDOE’s Office of School Wellness Programs
  • A summer experience designed to strengthen and refine teaching skills
  • Job search and hiring support
  • A school-based mentor during Year 1
  • Access to all citywide resources and supports for early career teachers

During the months of March through August, participants receive a monthly stipend of $1,000.  Full-time teacher salaries and employee benefits are available to all newly hired PE teachers beginning September 2018.

Program Eligibility

Strong candidates for this program possess the following:

Mandatory education requirements:

  • A bachelor’s degree, conferred by January 1, 2018.  All fields of study will be considered for acceptance to this program.  Candidates who have completed graduate coursework should include their graduate coursework transcripts with their application.
  • An undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or higher.  Candidates who have completed graduate coursework should include their graduate coursework transcripts with their application.

Citizenship requirements:

  • U.S. citizenship, or permanent residency status with a valid green card
  • Fluency in both written and spoken English

Previous work requirements:

  • Applicants should not hold, nor have ever received, a teaching certification from any U.S. state or territory. Those who have already received a teaching certification, as well as those who are currently completing a certification program, should review our application and hiring process to begin their careers in New York City schools
  • Applicants should not have previous experience with any NYCDOE program that subsidizes a master's degree towards teacher certification
  • Previous work experience with children, particularly in an urban setting, is preferred but not required

Master's Degree Program

Participants will earn a subsidized Master of Science, Physical Education Teacher degree at Brooklyn College. This is a 36-credit program that participants will complete part-time over two years.  While enrolled as Brooklyn College graduate students, participants will have full access to university supports and resources, including ongoing field supervision from a university-trained consultant during their first two years in the classroom.

Coursework will begin on January 22, 2018 for all Pathways to PE participants. Classes will be held two evenings a week (Mondays and Thursdays) for the entire semester.  Class schedules are subject to change in subsequent semesters.  Graduate coursework schedules are designed to accommodate participants’ work and teaching schedules;they are held in the evenings and during the summer. 

The NYC DOE subsidizes most of the cost of university tuition (excluding books and materials). Pathways to PE participants will be responsible for contributing $11,500 towards their degree. This amount will be deducted in 44 installments from the participants’ biweekly paychecks once they begin teaching in Fall 2018 (approximately $261.33/paycheck). There are also no payment plans or deferment options available; participants should plan and budget for the deductions accordingly.

In order to receive full subsidization benefits, participants must:

  • Remain in good academic standing with Brooklyn College,
  • Secure PE positions in designated NYC DOE "PE Works" schools starting Fall 2018, and
  • Remain in good standing at their schools throughout the duration of their degree.

Job Search Process

Upon successful completion of their spring and summer training experiences, participants will be encouraged to find positions at one of over 200 PE Works " Cohort 4" elementary schools. PE Works schools are committed to hiring high quality PE educators starting Fall 2018. All participants are expected to commit to at least three full years of teaching in a PE Works Cohort 4 school. Program staff will support candidates to diredct their job search efforts towards designated schools and assist participants in choosing one that is a good professional and personal fit. Participants are hired through a process of mutual consent, meaning that both the principal and participant agree to the hiring decision. This process allows for successful matches for both schools and teachers.

At this time, Pathways to PE is only recruiting aspiring Physical Education teachers to teach at the elementary level. If you are interested in teaching PE at the secondary level, and have not received a classroom teaching certification for PE, visit the New York State Education Department (NYSED) website to find institutions offering teacher preparation programs or the NYCDOE's Office of School Wellness Programs to learn more about other options available to you.

If you are interested in teaching PE at the secondary level and have received a teaching certificate for PE – or you will receive one by September 2018 – review our application and hiring process and complete an Online Teacher Application in order to be considered for secondary PE positions.

If you have questions about Pathways to PE that have not been addressed on our website, please email teachpe@schools.nyc.gov.