All Actions (Joined in April-May)


licensure • Hiring

The following is a list of all action items for corps members who joined the corps in April-May 2018. 


May Actions


Attend WELCOME webinar

Monday, 5/7 | Welcome Webinar | Meet your regional onboarding team and begin to build community with one another.

  • When Monday, May 7 from 6:00PM-7:00PM CST. Click here for the link!
  • Pre Work None - just attend!
  • System Requirements Laptop with Mac OS X with Mac OS 10.9 and higher OR Windows 7 and higher OR iPhone with iOS 7.0 and higher -- you will need to have speakers

missed the welcome webinar? Please watch the recording below:


Attend Intro to systems webinar

Tuesday, 5/8 | Intro to Systems (Logistics) Webinar | Learn about systems and required action steps related to onboarding (licensure, hiring, communications and more). Please plan to attend one of the two options below.

  • Option 1: Tuesday, May 8th 12:00PM-1:00PM CST. Click here for the link!
  • Option 2Tuesday May 8th 4:00-5:00 PM CST. Click here for the link!

Pre Work | Identify if you are exempt for the Basic Skills Licensure exam via previous SAT or ACT scores. Learn how to take this step hereIf you are exempt please take a screenshot of your exempt scores and have that saved on your computer in advance of the webinar. If you are not exempt please email Lauren at

Pre Work | Download Slack Download Slack here (there is also a mobile app!).This is the communication platform we use during Onboarding to build community and stay in touch

missed the welcome webinar? Please watch the recording below:


Complete the Accommodations Request Form

Tuesday, 5/8 | Teach For America strives to offer reasonable accommodations for corps members with disabilities during institute. Please use the form linked below to let us know if you have a disability that will impact your housing, mobility, medically-dictated dietary needs (i.e., diabetes, severe allergies), engagement with instructional materials during institute, etc. Our Disabilities Accommodations Office and summer training staff will follow up with corps members who request an accommodation. Please note that you may need to complete and upload additional medical documentation after you submit your request.

In order to submit an accommodations request, we ask that you complete the 2018 Accommodations Request Form by 5/8/2018 so we have ample time to follow up on the needs you indicate in the survey. While we ask that corps members complete the survey by this deadline, the survey is open to corps members until May in case additional accommodation requests need to be submitted.

Please note: We will collect information about non medically-dictated dietary needs (e.g., halal, kosher, vegan) this spring.


Use/Save Your New TFA Google Apps ID

Thursday, 5/9 | Within 48 hours of confirming your offer to join the corps, you should receive an email from with your new Google Apps ID/Gmail account (

This new email address will enable you to access a wide variety of resources later this year, including regional and institute information. Please make sure you have saved that email’s information and you are able to log in by taking the following steps:

  1. Log in to and click on your name in the upper right corner to view your profile and find your Google Apps ID.

  2. Navigate to “TFA Apps” in the upper right corner and choose the Google Apps for Education icon. You will be redirected to a new page where you can log in with your TFA Google Apps ID and the same password you use to log in to

  3. You can also sign in to your Teach For America Google account at, using your Google Apps ID and the same password you use to access

For more resources on your TFA Google Apps account or for related tech support, visit the Google Apps Support Center. If you have questions, please reach out to tech support through this form.


make sure you can access your google folder

Wednesday, 5/9 | Check you're able to access your Google Actions Folder by bookmarking your folder linked here.

Each corps member will have their own Google Drive Actions Folder. All corps members will receive their Google Drive Actions Folder during the Intro to Systems Webinar after confirmation. The Google Drive Actions Folder will be the place where action items are uploaded when due. 

This folder is unique to you and can only be accessed by you and the Onboarding team. Learn more here.

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Create Your State Licensure Account

Friday, 5/11 | Create your Illinois State licensure account, known as your ELIS Account. After you have created your account complete this 30 second survey here

If you are teaching in Northwest Indiana, please take no action. 

IMPORTANT: Your ELIS account is Illinois' online licensure portal. Although this action only takes 3 minutes it is incredibly important. Your ELIS account is where you will be entitled for your license and where your test scores will populate. You cannot teach without this account. Please make sure when you are registering that you enter all your demographic information correctly (first, last, SSN). Any misspellings, or wrong information, will lead to a delay in your license in August 2018. 

ELIS Resources: How To Create your Account | Navigating your ELIS Account 


send your basic skills exempt score to isbe

Friday, 5/11 | Send your Basic Skills Exempt score to the Illinois State Board of Education. If you are using the ACT for exemption click here. If you are using the SAT for exemption click here. If you are not exempt, or are teaching in Northwest Indiana, please take no action. 

Why? In order to be entitled for licensure the State of Illinois must see that you have met your basic skills requirement and/or are exempt from taking that exam. When you submit your scores to ISBE they will show up in your ELIS account automatically (this is why creating that account is so important). It takes ISBE a very long time to process your scores in your ELIS account, between 2-3 months, this is why we ask you to take this step very early on. 

Cost: There is a cost associated with this step ($37-$54). If you have questions about up front licensure costs please review your transition guide here. We know the cost of licensure is not small, if you have concerns about covering this cost by 12/3 please reach out to Lauren via a direct message in Slack and we will work with you on an alternative timeline. 


take the onboarding info survey

Sunday, 5/13 | Help us better get to know you by completing this Onboarding Survey here. In this survey, you'll share a bit more about yourself, your preferred method of contact, working and learning styles, and some facts. We'll be using the information shared here as we gear up for Hiring and Summer Training. [Here's the raw link to copy/paste into your browser should the hyperlink not work:

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Register for your content exam(s) & Upload your registration confirmation to your google folder 

Sunday, 5/13 |  Register for your content exam(s) and uploade your test date/time screenshot to your Google folder. Please select a test date no later than May 13th 2018. Locate registration information by clicking on your specific content exam from the list hereYou do not need to be in Illinois or Indiana to take your exam. You will be able to select a testing location near you (international locations are available). 

Study Materials: You can locate information on your specific exam, study materials and more in content test section here. On average corps members that study for 5 hours between when they register and when they test have a 98% passage rate. 

Cost: There is a cost associated with this step ($122-$198). We know the cost of licensure is not small, if you have concerns about covering this please reach out to Lauren via a direct message in Slack and we will work with you on an alternative timeline. 

Need an extension? If you would like to apply for a registration/test date extension please do so here.

30 day rule: In Illinois and in Indiana if you fail your exam you must wait 30 days to retest. All exams must be passed by July 15th 2018 (some exceptions apply if you are teaching in Indiana). For example: if you test by February 25th you will have 5 attempts prior to the deadline of 7/15/18 (Feb. 25th, Mar. 25th, Apr. 25th, May. 25th, Jun. 25th).  We backwards plan our registration and test deadlines to ensure you have the maximum amount of attempts possible.

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Tuesday, 5/15 |  Complete the Chicago Public Schools TFA Student Teaching Registration. This form is required for ALL Corps Members to be able to teach Summer School this summer. In the survey, use Christina Fissori as your TFA Coordinator. Her email is Summer School dates will be June 25-July 26 and you can put TBD for your School Placement information.Please note for the CPS Registration Process, Teach For America will have opportunities available to you at Registration Day to complete a TB Test and CPS Background check (this is in addition to your AmeriCorps Background check due to CPS' specific policies). If you have any questions, reach out to Steven on Slack. 


Update your Resume to your Google Folder 

Friday, 5/18 | In preparation for our upcoming interview experiences (more information to come), we want to ensure that we are taking steps to get you “interview ready”.  The first step is to revise and submit your resume.  Please update/revise your resume using this resume guide and upload the draft to your folder using the naming convention (LastFirst_Rough Draft Resume) by Friday, May 18th.

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Interviewing with Cultural Competence Reflection

Friday, 5/18 | In preparation for our upcoming interview experience, we’ve already prepared our resumes and now we’d like to set you all up with an opportunity to reflect on what it means to interview with cultural competence.  We know that many of you are well aware and strive for cultural competence but want you to spend some time thinking about what this might mean during the interview experience.

By Friday, May 18th, please review the following document (LINKED!) and submit a word document of your reflections (questions included) in your Google Folder.  Please use the name LastNameFirstName_CCReflection.  Additionally, be on the look-out for an email from Ryan directly with more information regarding the upcoming interview experience and how to prepare.

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Friday, 5/18 |  In order to best prepare for and support you in your transition to Chicago-Northwest Indiana Summer Training, we need to collect some information from YOU.  Welcome to the Summer Training Info Survey. Some of the questions in this survey are logistical and straight business-like while others aim to get to know you.  It will take you approximately 30 minutes to complete AND you will be required to select a summer living model. In order to be prepared to select a living model, you should allocate time to thoroughly review the Summer Training ManualThis manual contains all the details about many aspects of Summer Training. YOU MUST COMPLETE THIS INFO SURVEY BY MAY 18

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Friday, 5/25 | Make sure to read the AmeriCorps Background Check process walk through. Complete the Criminal History Check Authorization Form by Friday, May 18. By law, in order for Teach For America to run background checks, you have to give us permission. This is required to join AmeriCorps. 

Register by Friday, June 1. Complete by Friday, June 8 I Once you complete your Criminal History Check Authorization Form, Steven will send you the details on how to register for the FBI Fingerprint check. The costs are covered by TFA, but you are responsible for setting your appointment and getting to and from the appointment. You must register by Friday, May 25 and have your appointment completed by Friday, June 8.


Friday, 5/25.  Did you grow up in a particularly community in Chicago-Northwest Indiana, spend extensive time with the school community in a particular neighborhood or have a salient aspect of your identity you'd like to leverage in your leadership of students?  Are you passionate about serving in a school deemed as a Chicago Public School Opportunity School?

 Apply for one of our Special Hiring Pilots by Friday, May 25th.  

Community-Based Pilots

CPS Opportunity School Pilot



Take your content exam(s) and upload your "unofficial" pass Status to your google folder

Friday, 6/4 | Take your Content exam(s). Upon completion you will receive a print out indicating an immediate Pass/Fail status, this is known as an.  If you passed upload a picture of that to your Google folder. If you did not pass send Lauren a direct message in Slack and she will connect with you on next steps. You will receive your "Official" pass (indicating your specific score) via email within 4-8 weeks. 

Passing Scores: In Illinois a passing score is 240/300 (or 80%). In Indiana your score is scaled. For each test, the score is based on your performance on all sections of the test and is converted to a scale that ranges from 100 to 300, with a score of 220 representing the passing score for the test.


Friday 6/4 | Take a step back and make sure you are on track with all licensure action items. It is critical that you have an understanding of what you have completed and identify if anything is missing. Missed licensure action items will cause a delay in your license being entitled and could prohibit you from being able to teach on the first day of school.


  1. You know if you are basic skills exempt and submitted your screenshot to your google folder
  2. If you are taking the Basic Skills Exam you have met with Lauren and have a confirmed/registered test date
  3. You have created your ELIS Account and sent confirmation to the onboarding team here (does not apply if you are teaching in NWI)
  4. You sent your Basic Skills Exempt scores to ISBE (does not apply if you are taking the basic skills exam or are teaching in NWI)
  5. You registered for your content exam and uploaded your registration info to your google folder (does not apply if you are teaching in NWI or are already certified/transferring your license)  
  6. You took your content exam and uploaded your initial pass/fail to your google folder (does not apply if you are teaching in NWI or are already certified/transferring your license)  
  7. You applied to Relay GSE (does not apply if you are teaching in NWI or are already certified/transferring your license) 

In addition to this list can spot check your progress with all actions items via the MASTER ACTION ITEMS CHECKLIST

TEACHING IN NWI?  If you were accepted to the NWI Pilot and/or were assigned to exclusively teach in NWI most of your license items will take place May-August. You can read more about those steps here.  
ALREADY CERTIFIED? If you are transferring your license from out of state Lauren will be following up with you to begin that process once your have officially graduated and received your license in your current State. 
RECEIVED AN EXTENSION ON YOUR CONTENT EXAM? Make sure you have noted your extension timeline and have a plan to register and test. 


upload your official IL content test passing score Report pdf to your google folder 

Friday, 6/22 | Upload your the PDF of your official IL content test passing score report to your google folder and (if applicable) update your Relay application. You should have received this PDF directly from the ILTS via email 2-4 weeks after taking your exam. Please review the calendar below to learn when your scores should have been returned:

Test Date                                   Score Return

5/28/2018–6/10/2018                 6/22/2018

Your official score reports are required in order for you to be entitled for your license. If you received an extension for taking your content exam please review the additional score report return dates here to learn when you will receive your report. 

note: If you already know you will be teaching in Northwest Indiana this step does not apply to you. To learn more about your unique testing process click here