Partners in Education Program (PIE)

PIE Grads 2016

Congratulations to our St. Vrain PIE Program Graduates!


What is Partners in Education (PIE)?

Partners in Education (PIE) is a unique opportunity for novice (first, second or third year) teachers to earn their master’s degree with an explicit focus on their classroom experience while working with professors at a prestigious, nationally ranked university. PIE teachers work as full-time teachers for one year at a reduced salary while earning credits toward a master’s degree at CU-Boulder’s School of Education.

The PIE program is a cooperative venture with the School of Education at CU-Boulder and our partner districts: Adams County District 1–Mapleton, Adams County District 12 Five Star Schools, Adams County District 50, Boulder Valley, Brighton School District 27J, Fort Lupton and St. Vrain Valley Schools.*

A PIE Teacher:

  • Should be eager to collaborate with a mentor and other PIE teachers, motivated to obtain a master’s degree, and capable of handling the dual demands of full-time teaching and graduate study. PIE teachers have full-time teaching assignments in one of the partner districts mentioned above. PIE teachers must meet all of the following four requirements:
  • Must be admitted and enrolled in the School of Education Graduate School, meeting the 2.75 undergraduate grade point average requirement,
  • Should hold a valid Colorado initial/provisional teaching license at the time of employment, and
  • Must be hired for a teaching position in a participating district.

Master’s Degree Program Options for PIE Teachers:

PIE teachers can pursue graduate degrees in either the Curriculum and Instruction (formally Instruction and Curriculum in the Content Areas (ICCA)) or Educational Equity and Cultural Diversity (EECD) Master’s programs. Both programs are open to elementary, middle, and secondary level teachers.

For specific program details, please visit the CU PIE web page.CU Campus

Curriculum and Instruction Graduate Programs are available in K- 12 Math/Science, K- 12 Humanities or K- 12 Literacy. The Educational Equity and Cultural Diversity graduate program for PIE teachers is Linguistically Diverse Education. Please note that additional opportunities and requirements are associated with the EECD master’s degree. Graduates of this program will be eligible for the Linguistically Diverse Education Endorsement from the Colorado Department of Education. The additional requirements are: candidates must teach in a linguistically diverse school classroom at some point during the program, will have one additional meeting each month with an EECD mentor and take four additional credits.

Benefits for a PIE Teacher

In exchange for a reduced salary during the first year, PIE teachers receive the following benefits:

  • Intensive coaching and support one-half day each week in your classroom from an expert district teacher, in the role of a clinical professor. Clinical professors can help you set up your classroom, plan instruction, develop classroom management strategies, team teach, and work with students, parents/guardians and other teachers.
  • Opportunities to network with other novice teachers from your own and other school districts. Through seminar activities, PIE teachers share ideas and provide additional support.
  • As a district employee, medical insurance, sick days and personal leave days according to the district’s policies.
  • More rapid advancement on the salary scale. Additional raises for graduate course work eventually make up the first year salary reduction. In the long run, former PIE teachers make more money when compared to their first-year teacher counterparts who did not begin a master’s degree early in their careers.
  • Exceptionally high levels of professional growth. Principals report that PIE teachers progress much more rapidly than other new teachers. This growth is attributed to high-quality classroom mentoring and the application of ideas learned in graduate course work. In the words of one recent PIE graduate:

“I can’t believe how much I’ve learned! I’ve learned management, planning, types of assessments, new activities, and reflection. I’m more of a facilitator. I’m developing my philosophy – what I am as an educator, what I believe…”

How to Apply: Teachers interested in PIE must contact their school district and indicate their intention to participate in PIE by April 15, 2014. Contact names are listed below. If you are not currently employed by one of the partner districts, contact the district about hiring process and timelines. You are encouraged to pursue graduate admissions at CU-Boulder while researching employment options at the partner districts as CU admissions and district hiring are run independent of each other and are on different timelines.

To submit your St. Vrain Valley School District PIE application, click here.

For additional information, please contact one of our Clinical Professors.

Rychie Rhodes – 303-682-7411

David Baker – 303-682-7409