The Indigenous Teacher Education Project (ITEP) is a 4-year project in partnership with the Gila River Indian Community, Pascua Yaqui Tribe, Tohono O'odham Nation, and Tucson Unified School District to strengthen the learning experiences of indigenous students by addressing the need to increase the number of Indigenous teachers serving Indigenous students, schools, and communities. The project is led by Valerie Shirley, in collaboration with Jeremy Garcia and Kari Chew.
The ITEP will support a cohort of Indigenous preservice teachers in the Elementary Education Program, with a focus on Indigenous Education. Critical, and unique, the cohort will participate in the American Indian Language Development Institute (AILDI), to further strengthen efforts to revitalize and promote the use of Indigenous languages in classrooms. The $1 million project is funded through the United States Department of Education.