Fulbright Teaching and Excellence Achievement (TEA) Awards for Sri Lankans

Eligibility Requirements and Guidelines for Applying

Overview of Fulbright TEA Awards

The Fulbright Teaching and Excellence Achievement (TEA) Awards are given to secondary-level school teachers in schools with primarily local Sri Lankan students. TEA Awardees go to a U.S. university for a six-week, non-degree academic program. While in the U.S., they take academic seminars for professional development, observe master teachers, and share their culture and expertise with the local community.The Fulbright TEA Program brings approximately 160 outstanding international secondary-level schoolteachers from across the globe and provides general academic seminars focusing on new teaching methodologies, student-centered learning, content-based instruction, lesson planning, and instructional technology training for teachers.  Intensive English language instruction will be offered to teachers who need additional practice. The program will also include a practicum of at least 40 hours with a U.S. partner teacher in a secondary school near the host university to actively engage participants in the U.S. classroom environment. Cultural enrichment, mentoring, and support will be provided to participants throughout the program. The TEA program equips teachers with a deeper understanding of cutting-edge teaching practices, a more nuanced understanding of the U.S., and develops lasting relationships of mutual understanding between U.S. and Sri Lankan teachers and their students. Fulbright TEA prepares teachers to share their skills and experience with peers and students upon returning to Sri Lanka. Through this exchange U.S. students will become more aware of the unique dynamics, history, and culture of Sri Lanka. 

Grant Benefits

  • Pre-departure orientation program in Colombo.
  • Round-trip economy class air travel from Sri Lanka to the host institution in the U.S.
  • Housing (generally shared with other program fellows) and meals.
  • Health insurance including accident and medical/sickness coverage, but excluding pre-existing conditions.
  • Allowance for incidentals.
  • Baggage allowance on return flight. 
  • End-of-program workshop in Washington, D.C.

Eligibility Requirements

  1. Current, full time Sri Lankan secondary-level (6th to 12th grades) schoolteacher of English, Math, Science, Social Studies, or Special Education in a school that serves primarily local (not expatriate) populations. 
  2. Sri Lankan citizen who has continuously resided in Sri Lanka for a minimum of 2 years immediately prior to the award application deadline.
  3. Earned a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent education qualification.
  4. By the start of the Fulbright TEA program, completed teaching a minimum of 5 years.
  5. Proficient in English. 
  6. Not previously received a Fulbright TEA award.
  7. Not be applying for or holding permanent resident visa (Green Card) in the United States; not be dual U.S./Sri Lanka citizen; and not hold work or resident visa in another country.
  8. Must reside in Sri Lanka for a minimum of 2 years following the completion of the grant. 

Eligibility Preferences 

  1. Teach students from traditionally underrepresented groups including but not limited to people with disabilities, girls, and racial, ethnic, religious, and other minorities.
  2. Had few or no opportunities to travel to the U.S. 
  3. Demonstrate a commitment to continue working in secondary education for at least 5 years after the conclusion of the program and return to Sri Lanka.
  4. Share the knowledge and experience gained on the program with teachers and students in your home school and within your community.
  5. Demonstrate strong leadership potential.
  6. Demonstrate the ability to function well in an intensive and collaborative learning environment with teachers from around the world.
  7. Be able to live and work closely with people from a variety of backgrounds and interact in a culturally sensitive way with students (minors) and colleagues in U.S. secondary schools. 

Not Eligible

  1. Ministry of Education officials, full-time principals or educational administrators, full-time teacher trainers, university faculty, private English Language tutors.
  2. Staff or families of staff at a U.S. Embassy or U.S.-Sri Lanka Fulbright Commission.
  3. Dependents may not join participants on this program.
  4. Misrepresentation, false information, or plagiarism of any kind during the application or grant period is grounds for selection withdrawal or immediate grant termination.

Period of Award

Six (6) weeks total in either Spring (January-March) or Fall (September-November) of 2024. Dates to be determined by host universities in the U.S. in collaboration with IREX. You will be notified of exact dates if you are selected. 

Application Deadline and Process

Application Deadline: March 31, 2024 (including all support documents)

Application Process: Please click on these links for more about the Fulbright TEA Application Process and Supporting Documents.

(1) Fulbright TEA Online Application Guide for Applicants 
(2) Fulbright TEA Leave Approval Form (LAF) 
(3) Fulbright TEA Institutional Support and Reference Form (ISRF) 

Next Steps for Short-listed Candidates

Mandatory Interviews at US-SLFC Offices in Colombo during May 2024 (dates will be sent if you are shortlisted).

For More Information and To Apply

Please see this website from our partners at IREX to learn more about and apply for the Fulbright TEA Award. Note: You must register on this website to access information and apply.