Educational aides, substitute teachers and other school employees who within the past five years have been employed in a public school for at least one school year are eligible to receive an exemption from tuition and fees at Texas public colleges and universities if they enroll in a teacher certification program. The Texas Education Code Section authorizes an exemption from tuition and mandatory fees other than class and laboratory fees for certain applicants employed as educational aides, substitute teachers, bus drivers and other school employees. The purpose of the program is to encourage educational aides to complete full teacher certification by providing need-based exemptions from the payment of tuition and certain mandatory fees at Texas public institutions of higher education. To meet the initial requirements, individuals must meet the following criteria:
- Have one school year of full-time educational aide experience in Texas within the past five years; OR Be employed as a substitute teacher with 180 full days of service within the past five years;
- Meet certain economic criteria;
- Enroll in a program leading to teacher certification at a Texas public institution of higher education; and
- Be employed in some capacity by a school district in Texas (ex: educational aide, bus driver, substitute teacher, etc.).