MERIT: Making Education Relevant and Interactive through Technology
The Krause Center for Innovation at Foothill College reserves a few spaces in the MERIT program to teachers outside the United States. Since 2000, the MERIT program has helped teachers in northern California learn to make technology a dynamic and effective part of their teaching, and the Krause Center welcomes the opportunity to teach and learn from instructors around the world who are interested in the power and potential of educational technology. You can read and hear more about the MERIT Program on the home page and Frequently Asked Questions page of this site.
The MERIT Program has a history of international participants joining together with the 45 California teachers to form a global teacher professional development community. In 2010, we welcomed our first international teachers; one from El Salvador and two from Italy. We have since had four more Italian teachers, another Salvadorean, an education professor from Ireland, four teachers from Brazil, and five from Mumbai, India. These international teachers have collaborated with other members of the cohort to implement projects designed to help students become better engaged in their learning and better aware of the perspectives and talents of their peers around the world.
Why participate in MERIT?
Situated in the heart of Silicon Valley, the Krause Center for Innovation has a strong history of helping teachers design more engaging experiences for their students. International participants not only have the chance to learn about cutting edge hardware and freely available software, but will also work with teachers in the Silicon Valley and elsewhere on collaborative projects. It is our hope that students in our communities and yours will work together to build friendship and understanding.
All MERIT teachers will receive 2-weeks (10 days) of outstanding professional development and a few cool technology tools that can be used in the classroom. However, given donor restrictions on funding, international participants and U.S. participants from outside of California are not eligible to earn the stipend.
International applicants should carefully consider the costs of transportation to and lodging in Silicon Valley before deciding to apply.
If you are an international teacher wishing to participate in MERIT, please work with their school supervisors to contact MERIT (firstname.lastname@example.org) and inform us of your interest. To be accepted, the full support of your school (and local educational organization, if applicable) is required.
Requirements for International MERIT Teachers
This year, the KCI is fortunate to train international participants without charge. In the future, we may make a change and charge a fee to participate in the program. All international teacher participants are responsible for all their travel and hotel costs for the 2-week summer program. We expect you will be on the ground in California ready to start the MERIT Program on the first day. You may wish to consider arriving on the Sunday before the program starts and leaving on the Saturday after the program ends. The KCI will coordinate ground transportation from your lodging location to the Krause Center for Innovation each day at no additional cost. We may also be able to pickup and return participants to the airport (San Francisco International or San Jose International, preferably) by special arrangement with the KCI.
International MERIT Teachers are expected to:
- Be conversant in English. We know from experience that English fluency is best for the teacher participant to maximize the learning experience.
- Participate in an online, live webinar on May 21, 2016 to learn about the MERIT program that introduces all cohort participants and instructional team members. The webinar will be conducted 0830-1530 PST.
- Read and contribute to e-mail or discussion thread topics with MERIT colleagues.
- Arrive on time and attend all sessions of the Summer Institute
- Mentor colleagues here and in their home country on the use of educational technologies
- Implement technology projects designed during the MERIT program with your students
- Evaluate and report back to MERIT on those projects implemented during the following academic year.
- International teacher-participants are not responsible for completing program requirements after the Summer Institute.
- Have the support of the principal/lead teacher/supervisor/principal/headmaster at their schools, and are encouraged to open lines of communication between the MERIT Program and their schools as early as possible.
- Send us an email of your intent to apply to either: Roni Habib, Program Director (email@example.com) or Dr. Steven McGriff, KCI Instructional Technologist (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Complete the online application.
How to apply
It is recommended that you start by downloading the PDF copy of the online application form, attached below. You can review the application questions and prepare your answers in advance of going to the online application. When you have prepared your answers in a word processor, go to the online application and cut and paste your responses into the appropriate fields.
Notes on Expected Costs for International Participants
Any international school or educational authority considering sending a teacher to California for the MERIT program should consider the following in their budgeting plans:
- Travel. Fly to either the San Francisco (SFO) or San Jose (SJC) International Airports; please plan for the teacher(s) to arrive at one of these two airports one or two days before the program start date and to depart no earlier than the Saturday morning after the program ends. We will make every effort to help those arriving with transportation to their lodging.
- Lodging. Expect to spend $75 - $110/night for a room. If we are able to secure a favorable arrangement for participants needing lodging, such that we can group all international participants together, we will forward that information as soon as we are able.
- Meals. While meal costs vary substantially, one can eat reasonably for $30/day (this does not include purchases of alcoholic beverages).
We understand that your commitment is a significant dedication of funds, and will make every effort to help you share the benefits of the program with as many of your colleagues as possible.
Ask us questions before completing your application: email@example.com
MERIT Program Director
Instructional Technologist, Professor in Residence [firstname.lastname@example.org]