The Independence School District has partnered with Northwest Missouri State University to offer a unique fellowship opportunity.

Fellows will be employed as first-year teachers in the ISD with the direct support of a district-assigned mentor while obtaining a Master’s of Science in Education in Curriculum and Instruction: Engagement, Learning, and Achievement from Northwest Missouri State University (NWMS).

Benefits & Housing

The ISD recognizes the financial challenges associated with graduate school for teachers. The district is committed to providing additional supports for Fellowship teachers with the following amenities and benefits:

  • A district-assigned mentor who will assist with curriculum implementation, refining instructional practices, classroom management, and support with graduate coursework
  • Free, fully-furnished housing, including utilities and wifi

Please note: Fellows are financially responsible for their graduate tuition to Northwest Missouri State University. Classes are offered to ISD Fellows at a reduced rate. Some financial assistance may be available to Fellows through NWMS, contact the Financial Aid Office for information.

NWMS Admissions Requirements

  • Be pre-hired by the Independence School District
  • Complete a teacher education program prior to the start of the Fellowship year
  • Be eligible for state licensure
  • Earn a 3.0 GPA in undergraduate coursework
  • Have a GRE or other NWMS qualifying score
  • Commit to 3 years of teaching in the Independence School District after successful completion of the fellowship program

NWMS Courses

The Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction consisting of 30 credit hours taken over 4 trimesters. Classes will be held at the ISD’s Central office (201 N Forest Ave, Independence, MO) or Northland Innovation Center (6889 N Oak Trafficway #400, Gladstone, MO).

Course Schedule:

Summer – 2 courses
Fall – 3 courses
Spring – 3 courses
Summer – 2 courses

Program Courses:

  • Culture and Student Engagement
  • Visionary School Leadership
  • Feedback and Goal Setting
  • Leading the Digital Age
  • Change Mangement in Education
  • Data Literacy and Assessment for Schools
  • Multicultural Education for Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion
  • Trends and Issues in Curriculum & Instruction
  • Academic Inquiry
  • Capstone Seminar

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the price of tuition?

Tuition is approximately $415 per credit hour (2023-2024 school year).

Is financial aid available? 

Financial aid is available through Northwest Missouri State University. Contact the NWMS Financial Aid Office:

        Mr. Charles (Buddy) Mayfield
        Director/Financial Assistance
        AD 273 Maryville, MO 64468    

Do Fellows have to take the GRE? 


What is the role of a mentor?

A mentor’s primary role is to support Fellows with:

  • Lesson planning
  • Model teaching strategies and/or structures
  • Use of videtaping lessons to strengthen teaching practices
  • Co-teaching
  • Data collection, reflection, and application
  • Provide resources
  • Facilitate or support in meetings
  • Set up observations of colleagues
When will I know who my mentor is?

Fellows are paired with their mentor in early summer.

Where are the apartments located?

Maple Arms Apartments are located at 1101 W Maple Ave, just a short drive from the Independence Square.

What is included in Fellows housing?

The cost of rent, utilities and wi-fi are covered with Fellows housing. The apartments are also fully furnished.

Can we tour the apartments?  

Of course! We can arrange a tour of the apartments offered as a housing options for fellows. Contact Rita DeLoach in Human Resources who will work with ISD Facilities to arrange a tour.

Can my significant other live in the apartment with me?

Married couples are allowed to live together in the apartment.

Are pets allowed in the apartments?

Pets are not allowed in Fellows housing. 

When do the apartments become available for Fellows to move-in?

Apartments are typically available at the end of June or the beginning of July.

Do I have to live in the apartments?

​No, it is not a condition of your employment as a Fellow.You may opt out of living in the apartments, but this is the only housing available that will be paid for by the District during your Fellowship. 

Do Fellows receive benefits/insurance?

Yes, the Fellowship compensation package includes:

  • $38,000 base salary*
  • Health insurance
  • District assigned mentor to assist with curriculum implementation, instructional practices, classroom management and other supports
    *Students are financially responsible for tuition to Northwest Missouri State University at a reduced rate.
What is the salary after the Fellow’s year?

Salary is determined each year by the Board of Education, but after successful completion of your fellowship year, you will be at the Master’s Degree, Step 2. You can check the salary schedule on the ISD website.

Can Fellows coach ISD sports?

We prefer Fellows wait to coach until their second year. You are welcome to volunteer to assist in order to gain coaching experience in the District.