Teach For India

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Teach For India
Teach For India Logo
Founded 2007
Founder Shaheen Mistri
Type Education, Nonprofit organisation
Focus Eliminating Educational Inequity in India
Area served
New Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Bangalore
Key people
Shaheen Mistri - Founder & Chief Executive Officer
Website www.teachforindia.org

Teach For India (TFI) is a non-profit organisation that is a part of the Teach For All network.[1] The Fellowship recruits college graduates and working professionals to serve as full-time teachers in low-income schools for two years.[2] Teach For India is striving to end the problem of educational inequity in India and provide an excellent education to all children.[3]

India's education crisis[edit]

India has made strides in primary school enrollment but despite an initially high rate of enrollment, drop-out rates are very high. India continues to have 2.27 million children out of school. In India today, 4% of all children never start school, 58% don’t complete primary schools, 90% don’t complete secondary school, and only 10% of children go on to college[citation needed]. A number of reasons have been attributed for this situation, but the most popularly accepted reason is the quality of education in schools.[citation needed] 17% of teachers are absent from classrooms every day.[4] India is currently facing one of the worst educational crises in the world. There are approximately 400 million children under the age of 14[4] with 12 million young adults joining the workforce every year. However, 52% of grade 5 children cannot read a grade 2 text.[4] 32% of grade 2 children cannot recognize numbers and 50% of grade 5 children cannot do basic subtraction.

The Teach For India model[edit]

The TFI Fellows work across 209 schools[citation needed] in seven cities of India - Mumbai, Pune, New Delhi, Chennai, Ahmedabad , Bengaluru and Hyderabad reaching approximately 38,000 students.[5] The organisation's plan is to expand by 2016 to 2000 fellows working across 10 cities teaching at least 60,000 students. TFI was started in 2008[citation needed] by a group of activists led by Shaheen Mistri who wanted to bring about a systemic change in the Indian education sector by infusing committed teachers into the system.[6][7] The group met Wendy Kopp, CEO and Founder of Teach For America (TFA), and following a McKinsey study[citation needed], started adapting Teach For America’s Theory of change in India.

Views on TFI model[edit]

The TFI model is new to India. But in the case of older partner programs of TFI such as Teach for America, some people have questioned whether all Fellows come with the same level of commitment to the cause. Wendy Kopp, CEO of Teach for All and the founder of Teach For America, dismissed this suggestion saying "this is the toughest way to boost a resume".

A key challenge for TFI appears to be the education policies in India. India does not have the equivalent of the "No Child Left Behind" policy enacted in the US under the Bush administration. The Government of India has now started paying attention to this issue. On the occasion of India's Teacher's Day on September 5, 2012, the President of India Pranab Mukherjee said that “Qualified and competent teachers, continuously renewing their capabilities and excellence through research, experimentation and innovation would be the nation's strength." The government is now planning to launch a National Mission on Teachers and Training.

Unlike in some other countries where the Teach For All movement works, the Fellows at Teach for India are not paid by the government or the school they work in. Instead, TFI itself raises the funds to pay the Fellows. This could have been a challenge to the scalability of the concept but the organisation has received strong support from charitable foundations like Reliance Foundation and corporates like JP Morgan, Thermax and Godrej.

Published works[edit]

Similar programs[edit]

  • Teach For All - Teach For All was founded in September 2007 by Wendy Kopp and Brett Wigdortz to support local entrepreneurs who wish to start independent, locally governed organisations.
  • Enseñá por Argentina
  • Teach For America
  • Teach First
  • Teach For Pakistan
  • NYC Teaching Fellows - A program that recruits, selects, and trains mid-career professionals and recent college graduates from all majors and backgrounds to become teachers in NYC public schools. It is responsible for up to 1/3 of the teaching staff in the city. While teaching, Fellows earn full salary, benefits, and a subsidised master's degree in education.
  • Teach For China

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Teach For All". teachforall.org. Retrieved 19 April 2016. 
  2. ^ "Home | TeachforIndia". www.teachforindia.org. Retrieved 2016-08-19. 
  3. ^ "The Crisis | TeachforIndia". www.teachforindia.org. Retrieved 2016-08-19. 
  4. ^ a b c http://www.teachforindia.org/ed-crisis.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ http://www.teachforindia.org/impact/index.php
  6. ^ Karambelkar, Maitreyee (26 May 2010). "A lesson in combining education and entrepreneurship" – via The Hindu. 
  7. ^ "Education should focus on overall devpt of children: Mistri". 24 May 2010.