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Massachusetts Department of Higher Education's                         Office of Student Financial Assistance
Paraprofessional Teacher
Preparation Grant Program
The Paraprofessional Teacher Preparation Grant Program was established by the Legislature for the purpose of providing financial assistance to Massachusetts residents who are currently employed as paraprofessionals in Massachusetts public schools, but wish to become certified as full time teachers. This grant is designed to help reduce financial barriers that often become obstacles for many paraprofessionals in attaining higher education. The program is also an attempt to help address the Commonwealth's current teacher shortage. Financial need is not a requirement for the Paraprofessional Teacher Preparation Grant. However, recipients must annually file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Who Is Eligible?
To be eligible for a Paraprofessional Teacher Preparation Grant, a student must:
  • Be a permanent legal resident of Massachusetts.
  • Be a United States citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Be eligible under Title IV Regulations and not in default of a state or federal education loan or grant.
  • Enroll in an undergraduate degree program (full-time or part-time) leading to teacher certification in a Massachusetts Public College.
  • Be employed, for a minimum of two years, as a paraprofessional in a Massachusetts public school.
  • If employed less than two years as a paraprofessional, a student may qualify for the grant only if the undergraduate course of study will lead to teacher certification in high need disciplines: Math, Science, Special Education, Foreign Languages, or Bilingual Education.
  • Has not earned a bachelor's degree.
Eligible Institutions
For the purposes of the Paraprofessional Teacher Preparation Grant, an eligible institution is defined as a regionally accredited public or private, college or university in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that offers a teacher preparation program leading to licensure, approved by the Massachusetts Department of Education (MDOE); or a two-year public college that has a signed articulation or joint admissions agreement with such an institution for a teacher preparation program.
Award Amounts
The grant award under this program will vary, depending on the type of institution and the students' enrollment status (full-time or part-time) as follows:
Institution Type Maximum award amounts
Public University $625 per credit, maximum of $7,500 per academic year
Private College/University $625 per credit, maximum of $7,500 per academic year
State College $450 per credit, maximum of $6,000 per academic year
Community College $250 per credit, maximum of $4,000 per academic year
How Do I Apply?

Paraprofessionals interested in applying for the grant must complete the following:

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Massachusetts Office of Student Financial Assistance
454 Broadway, Suite 200
Revere, MA  02151
Phone: (617) 391-6070
Fax: (617) 727-0667