Alaska Teacher Placement
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Frequently Asked Questions

This section provides answers to the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) we get at Alaska Teacher Placement. The page has links to detailed tutorials for some questions, and links to the correct page in our website to answer others.

Our Top FAQs!

How can I get help with completing my application?

This is our most common request for help, and the new ATP Applitrack database has its own help desk, and tutorials. You can find help with filling out the new resume forms and other associated documents here:

» Applitrack System Help

How much is the starting salary for teachers in Alaska?

This is complicated question, as each district has its own pay scale. There is no statewide pay scale.

I am certified in another state. Does Alaska have reciprocity?

Alaska does not call it that, but the short answer is "yes", if you are certified, and completed a pre-service teacher preparation program from an accredited school. There is a lot to know about this, and we've done our best to pull it together on the Getting Certified page.

I am a foreign national. Can I apply for Alaska teaching jobs?

Ah, another very common question. We created a separate page just to answer this one. The short answer is "Maybe" ;-)

» Foreign Teachers Working in Alaska

Where can I find answers to my many, many questions about living and working in Alaska?

We strongly suggest that you post your general questions to the ATP Forum. There is a very helpful group of Alaska teachers, principals and other administrators, as well as some state education officials, who regularly answer questions there.

Don't forget that this forum is fully searchable and you can find lots of good advice from those who came before you. When YOU get to be an Alaskan teacher, please continue to assist those interested in learning about teaching in our state by contributing your experiences and advice.

Other Common Questions

Is it true that I can have all my loans paid off if I teach in Alaska?

A definite maybe! Information on this is controlled by disparate sources, and is poorly distributed. It's not a very well understood program in Alaska, and your district may not have ever heard of it. We had trouble contacting some of the key people at the state and federal government for clarification, but eventually got the skinny from Elizabeth Sweeney at EED.

There are very specific criteria that allow some teachers in low income schools to get part or all of their loans paid off. The rules vary by loan type, certification area, school, and number of years you teach there, but range from a total of $5,000 to $17,500 in loan cancellation.

» Teacher Cancellation Low Income (TCLI) Eligible Schools in Alaska – 343 Schools in 2006!
http://www.alaskateacher.org/downloads/tcli_alaska_2006.xls

TCLI Eligible Schools in Alaska – 355 Schools in 2005! http://www.alaskateacher.org/downloads/tcli_alaska_2005.xls

Also, this is not just for new teachers. If you meet the listed Stafford or Perkins loan criteria, and taught in one of these schools, you should really check it out. The list that the U.S. TCLI folks keep goes back to 1998, and as long as you fill out the form, and have the Chief Administrative Officer of the district you worked for sign it, you may get some repayment help. You can get credit for service in eligible schools that you've worked in since 1998. It's pretty cool, and I don't know why this program isn't better known!

» TCLI Website: This site is searchable by year, state and district.
https://www.tcli.ed.gov/CBSWebApp/tcli/TCLIPubSchoolSearch.jsp

Alaska EED Contact for TCLI
Elizabeth Sweeney – elizabeth_sweeney@eed.state.ak.us

For some quick information, try these links:

Is there a list of schools that hire for summer school programs?

No, not really. Districts may post summer teaching opportunities on our site late in the spring, but they usually hire their own teachers on "extra duty" contracts to take these positions. These positions usually do not count toward retirement contributions, and the rate of pay varies.

Is it true that districts will pay for your relocation to Alaska?

Not usually. There may be exceptions if a district gets in a bind, but the vast majority of districts will expect you to get you and your possessions up to Alaska on your own. Some do pay for a teacher's ticket from Anchorage to the village you will teach in, or will offer a stipend to help pay for some shipping. This is not nearly as common as it used to be.

What should I do about winter clothes?

We cover this topic on our Shopping Tips page. The short answer is that you buy some lightweight outdoor clothing that is good for parts of Alaska when you arrive in July or August, and then find out from other staff what sort of clothing is recommend. There are links to proven sources of winter clothing on the Shopping Tips page.