Boulder Journey School (BJS)

Boulder Journey School Teacher Education Program (BJS TEP)

University of Colorado Denver (UCD)

Colorado Department of Education (CDE)

*The BJS TEP is a progressive, innovative program that is continually evolving; thus the information below, including fees, are subject to change at any time.

What are the estimated fees for the BJS TEP?

*These tuition estimates are for the 2019-2020 school year only.

                                                Total Tuition: Approximately $22,000            

                                                Paid Practicum: Gross income  $12,000 (before taxes)

                                                                            Reduces Tuition to approximately $12,000       


What is the MA Degree name?

Interns graduate with a MA in Education and Human Development with a chosen Concentration Area: Human Learning and Development (HL&D), Early Childhood Education (ECE), Early Literacy (ELT), or Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE). Please see above for the differences in the ECSE Concentration.

What if an Intern wants to defer acceptance for the following year?

Deferment for one year can only be requested if there are extenuating circumstances after acceptance and after the program deposit fee is paid. A written request and supporting documentation of the circumstances must be submitted to BJS TEP Administrators.

Does this program include a paid practicum?

Everyone accepted to the BJS TEP completes a 12-month paid practicum, as an employee of the practicum site where each Intern is placed. Interns earn $12 per hour for working a minimum of 1,000 hours, totalling $12,000 before taxes. Specific schedules and weekly hours vary from practicum site to practicum site, and based on the scheduled weekly hours there could be a potential to earn more income. Interns will complete the necessary paperwork regarding employment at a later date. If an Intern is currently employed at a school and will complete the practicum at his/her current school, hours and salary can be negotiated between the Intern and his/her employer, as long as a minimum of 1,000 hours is completed.

What are the Professional Objectives of this program?

The BJS TEP is designed to support Interns in embracing the following professional qualities: Professional Character, Reflective Observation, Creativity, Resiliency & Humility, Communication & Collaboration, Courage, Critical Knowledge, Curiosity, Literacy of Technology, and Visionary Leadership.

How do the BJS TEP Administrators make decisions regarding practicum placements?

The placement process for both the practicum site and the age group is very complex. BJS TEP Administrators consider many factors and feel confident that all of the practicum sites and all of the age groups, from Infants through Pre-Kindergarteners, offers an extraordinary and unique experience for all Interns in this program. For applicants who have already applied to the program, there has likely already been communication around possibilities for a practicum placement site. Please understand that Interns can be placed with any age group within these sites (Infant, Toddler, Preschool, or Pre-Kindergarten). All of the practicum sites, classrooms, and age groups offer the potential to develop the intended professional qualities, which are the objectives of the BJS TEP.

Do Interns participate in more than one practicum?

The BJS TEP includes a 12-month practicum at one school, affording Interns the opportunity to establish long-term relationships with children, families, teachers, and administrators. Based on circumstances that can occur in any school, there may be a situation in which a placement could shift within a practicum site.

What if an Intern wants to plan a trip or event during the year?

The BJS TEP is an accelerated 12-month program, so missing parts of this program can lead to falling behind in program requirements. Applicants who want to plan a big event or trip, or have a big event currently scheduled for the upcoming year should consider applying to this program at another time.

What if an Intern does not have an Early Childhood Education (ECE) Statement of Eligibility at the start of the program?

For Interns who do not already have an existing CO Teaching License, obtaining an Early Childhood Education (0-8) Statement of Eligibility through the Colorado Department of Education is required to start this program, and will hold an Alternative Teaching Licensure during the program. Interns will be eligible for an Initial Colorado Teaching License in Early Childhood Education (0-8) upon completion of this program. If an Intern requires support with this process, please reach out to a BJS TEP Administrator for help.

Is childcare offered for Interns who are also parents of young children?

Each practicum site has different policies regarding childcare for employees’ children. Upon acceptance, an Intern can request childcare, and once placed at a practicum site, the site Director or Administrator will discuss whether childcare is offered to employees, the costs involved, and if space is available.

What does a typical week look like? 

Depending on the practicum site, Interns typically work in the classroom 3-5 days per week, in addition to any scheduled school meeting or event. Interns also participate in a variety of of instructional hours, including courses, in-services, seminars, workshops, and field trips, totalling over 225 instruction hours. During fall and spring, Interns attend weekly courses facilitated by BJS TEP Instructors, held at BJS. These courses are typically held on Wednesdays, during a three hour block, with one additional hour block scheduled at another time during the week.

In addition to the Wednesday block courses, during fall and spring, Interns also attend approximately one Core and one Concentration Course per term. These courses are held on nights and/or weekends and are facilitated by UCD Instructors. The courses are hybrid (part face to face and part online), and the meetings are typically held at BJS. All additional instructional hours are scheduled throughout the year. During the summer, the structure of instruction time changes slightly, with condensed course timelines.

*This structure looks different for Interns in the Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Concentration.

What is the attendance policy for BJS TEP Instruction Hours?

Attendance and participation in all aspects of the program are required. Any missed BJS TEP instruction time, including courses, in-services, seminars, workshops, field trips, must be made up. BJS TEP Instructors and Administrators assign make up work to account for instruction hours missed. UCD course Instructors have their own attendance policies.

What is the workload like for the courses?

Interns attend weekly courses facilitated by BJS TEP Instructors. For the UCD Core and Concentration Courses, each Instructor has different timelines, as well as different homework workloads. The summer session UCD Core and Concentration Courses are condensed. Please remember that these are graduate level courses, so plan accordingly. Past Interns have indicated that they have spent approximately 10-20  hours a week on homework.

What is the structure of the weekly courses facilitated by BJS TEP Administrators?

Each year the structure of the weekly courses facilitated by BJS TEP Instructors changes due to the progressive nature of this program. For the 2019-2020  school year, it is anticipated that these courses will be held on Wednesdays between the hours of 8:30am- 5:30pm in either a four hour block or a three hour block, with one hour scheduled at a different time during the week. All practicum sites schedule teaching hours around the Wednesday courses.

When is the first day of this program?

Everyone is required to participate in Orientation at BJS on Monday, August 5, and Tuesday August 6, 2019. Do not schedule anything for the entire week, as each practicum site may have additional requirements. Depending on the practicum site, childcare for Interns’ children may or may not be available during the week.

What materials do Interns need to start this program?

Are Interns eligible for Health Insurance?

Please review the University of Colorado Denver website for updates on obtaining Health Insurance through the State Health Insurance Exchange for Colorado. 

Are Interns eligible for Financial Aid?

Yes, Interns are eligible for Financial Aid through FAFSA. Applicants and/or Accepted Interns can apply for FAFSA at any time, but please be aware that the UCD Financial Aid office will have access to FAFSA records only after admission into the program has been processed. At that time, the Financial Aid office will be able to address questions regarding the specific award. The maximum for the Federal Stafford Loan for graduate students is $20,500 per academic year (fall, spring, and summer), approximately $10,250 for fall and $10,250 for spring. Students who have borrowed the maximum annual limit of Stafford Loans may qualify for additional Federal Graduate Plus loans for up to $7,100, based on need and credit eligibility.

Are there any recommendations regarding budgeting for the year?

The BJS TEP Administrators understand that during this 12-month program, finances are different for each Intern. If an Intern takes out Financial Aid for fall and spring, the Intern receives up to $10,250 for each term from the Stafford Loan. This loan can pay for the BJS TEP Tuition ($6,000 Fall/ $6,000 Spring) and the UCD Tuition (approximately $10,000 (not including fees) in three to four payments throughout the year), with some monies left over each semester for living expenses. For summer, if an Intern receives the full $7,100 Grad Plus Loan, this loan can pay for UCD Tuition and the rest can be put towards living expenses. Once an Intern is placed at a practicum site, and the number of weekly hours and pay period information is determined, the Intern will want to estimate how much he/she will net (after taxes) on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. BJS TEP Administrators recommended saving funds prior to the start of the program to use toward living expenses.

Can Interns work another job, in addition to the paid teaching practicum, while completing this program?

Having another part time job could be feasible, as long as the hours are flexible and can be scheduled around the Intern’s required practicum hours, course schedules, and other school requirements. Because there needs to be a lot of flexibility, BJS TEP Administrators suggest the following possibilities for earning extra income: Seek babysitting opportunities, substitute at your practicum site or at other schools in the area. To substitute in public school districts a Substitute Teaching License through the CDE is required. This is an accelerated program, requiring weekly teaching hours, attendance during classes/instructional times, and time for graduate level homework for four courses per term, so other part time work might not be desirable.

Do Interns need a car to participate in this program?

Once practicum placements are determined, Interns will want to research the local bus system or carpool possibilities, based on the location of their practicum. Interns attend classes at BJS once or twice a week, and there is a bus stop directly outside the school. Interns in the ECSE concentration attend some classes on the UCD campus. Additionally, an Instructor may choose to schedule one or two classes per semester at a different location.

What careers are Interns qualified for upon completion of this program?

Graduates work in a variety of settings upon completion of this program. Some Interns choose to look for a job while completing the program, while some Interns choose to wait until graduation to search for a job. Both seem to be good choices, based on individual preferences. Graduates from the program hold a variety of jobs, ranging from public to private sectors, Early Childhood programs, K-3, Higher Education, Parent Outreach, etc.

Will Interns learn about the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education during this program?

Since 1995, Boulder Journey School educators and BJS TEP Administrators have been inspired by a strong relationship with educators from the world-renowned schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy, and intensive study of their philosophy and pedagogy. This relationship has also influenced the BJS TEP. The social constructivist approach to the BJS TEP reflects this inspiration and also reflects inspirations from many other local, national, and international partnerships.The design of the BJS TEP supports conversations around various approaches to education. Interns are placed in a variety of settings, each offering a unique history and philosophical approach to education. This provides a platform for ongoing conversations around how the professional qualities of teachers can support different high quality approaches to education.

Will Interns learn about other approaches, in addition to the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education?

Interns are exposed to a variety of approaches through conversations with fellow Interns and colleagues and as part of Wednesday courses, Core courses and Concentration courses.

Will Interns work with children with special rights?

The student population varies from practicum site to practicum site, with some sites having a larger number of students with identified special rights. All of the practicum sites recognize the value of supporting individual rights for all children.

Will Interns without much experience with technology receive support?

The BJS TEP program relies heavily on the use of innovative technology, and there are different support systems offered depending on need. BJS TEP Administrators send online introductions to Google Drive, the system of communication for the BJS TEP, before the program begins. In addition, UCD uses a learning management system called CANVAS that supports the UCD Core and Concentration Courses. This system is introduced by UCD.

How long has the BJS TEP been in existence?

The BJS TEP began in 1999 and has developed in partnership with the University of Colorado Denver and the Colorado Department of Education. Each year, we assess the program so that it remains innovative and responsive to 21st century educational goals.  

What are the basic requirements that Interns will need to complete in order to graduate at the end of the program?

To complete the BJS TEP, Interns are required to teach a minimum of 1,000 practicum hours and fulfill all teaching responsibilities as outlined by each practicum site. Interns also complete all instructional hours by attending and fulfilling the requirements for the BJS TEP, including 12 UCD courses, in-services, seminars, workshops, and field trips. Interns are required to submit an Archive of all of the work completed during the program. For Interns, who will be obtaining an Initial Early Childhood Education Colorado Teaching License, all necessary paperwork must be completed by the start of the program. All Interns who do not already hold a state Teaching License are required to have their ECE Statement of Eligibility before the program starts, and must complete the necessary paperwork for the Alternative Teaching License at Orientation.

Can Interns choose more than one Concentration Area?

Because this is an accelerated program, and the courses are scheduled and designed to fit into a 12-month timeline, it is not likely that Interns will be able to choose more than one Concentration Area. Interns can contact UCD upon graduation about future coursework possibilities.

Am I Eligible for Health Insurance?

Please see below, for information from the University of Colorado Denver website, to review health insurance options through Connect for Health Colorado.

“Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government requires that U.S. citizens have health insurance coverage or pay a fee on their next federal tax return. CU Denver does not have its own requirement that students have coverage, but had historically offered an optional health insurance plan to students. However, since the opening of the health insurance exchange marketplace in 2014, the market for health insurance has changed. More affordable care is available, and the market for optional university health plans has practically disappeared.”  

Students should visit​, the official State Health Insurance Exchange for Colorado, to explore their health insurance options.”

Is there any information available to Interns relocating to Boulder?

Below is some helpful information regarding moving to the Boulder area:

Map of Boulder

Surrounding Areas 

Lafayette, Niwot, Longmont, Lyons, Louisville, Gunbarrel, Broomfield

Housing Helpers   


Apartment Guide

*There are many different types of housing options (renting a room in a house, renting a house with multiple people, or renting an apartment in a complex or through a private party. The above link only lists apartment complexes.

Affordable Housing through the City of Boulder

Please understand that affordable housing has eligibility restrictions. The housing department does not accept full time students; however, Interns might qualify, based on age (over 24), number of work hours, or dependents.

The BJS TEP Administrators have not had personal experiences, nor can they recommend specific housing options. The list above is only intended as a resources.