Science Teacher Residency (STaR) Program

STaR Logo

The Science Teacher Residency (STaR) program was launched in response to the need to expand access to high-quality professional development for Arizona’s science teachers. This new STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) teacher training program, generously supported by Helios Education Foundation, provides instruction and mentoring to third through eighth-grade teachers at no cost to them. The STaR program is designed to enhance educators’ mastery of science content and equip them with the skills needed to effectively teach and engage students.

This program seeks to remove all barriers, many of which are cost-related, for teachers who are looking for STEM training. The STaR program relieves the financial burden, covering all costs related to attendance, including travel, materials, and a stipend equivalent to funding a substitute for their classroom.

About the Program

The innovative, hands-on program starts with five days of instruction at the Science Center led by expert facilitators and content specialists. This training focuses on addressing common misconceptions about STEM subjects that are often taught in the classroom and giving participants the tools to take those same lessons back to their schools. Teachers also participate in two days of field trips at local businesses to showcase the practical application of STEM and connect them with professionals who use STEM in their jobs every day. The goal is for those professionals to later be guest speakers in their classrooms, or to help coordinate class visits to their workplace.

Participating teachers also receive a year of individualized mentoring and coaching as part of STaR. At the end of the program, they will walk away with all the materials needed to create lesson plans to effectively teach what they learned.

Criteria to Apply

Your school must meet one of the following:

  • Qualify for Title 1 Funding,
  • Have a large population of Native American and/or Latino students, or
  • Be located in rural Arizona and consistently experience high teacher turnover.

You must teach general education science or STEM in grades three through eight.

Application Requirements

A letter of Understanding must be submitted to participate.

Agreement outlines:

  • An understanding of the time commitment
  • A commitment that coaches will support you on your campus
  • A commitment to implementing the provided lesson plans
  • Signature from your administration

Questions? Contact us at


The Science Teacher Residency will consist of six independent modules, each focused on a specific strand of science, that will engage teachers through investigating common misconceptions that interfere with a deeper understanding of key concepts and ideas.

During this critical time, Arizona Science Center is closed in an effort to encourage people to stay at home. We recognize our role as thought leaders in science and believe it is our obligation to model responsible decision making to help reduce the spike in cases and the resulting pressure on local health systems. As a result, the fall Physical Science and Earth Science STaR modules will take take place virtually. Throughout the fall semester (August 31 through December 11), STaR participants will be engaged in misconceptions and inquiry-based teaching practices through synchronous and asynchronous learning opportunities. Applications for both modules will be accepted between July 13 and August 14. Applicants will be notified of acceptance status by August 17.

Upcoming Modules


Physical Science

Note: Physical science content is primarily a focus at grade levels 4, 7 and 8.

Application window: July 13 - August 14
Applicants will be notified of acceptance status by August 17

Apply Now

Earth Science

Note: Earth science content is primarily a focus at grade levels 4, 7 and 8.

Application window: July 13 - August 14
Applicants will be notified of acceptance status by August 17

Apply Now


About Helios Education Foundation

Helios Education Foundation is dedicated to creating opportunities for individuals in Arizona and Florida to achieve a postsecondary education. The Foundation’s work is driven by four fundamental beliefs in Community, Investment, Equity, and Partnership. Helios invests in programs and initiatives across the full education continuum – from early grade success through postsecondary education. In Arizona, where Latino students comprise the largest percentage of the K-12 public school population, the Foundation is implementing its Arizona Latino Student Success initiative focused on preparing all students - especially students in high poverty, underserved Latino communities - for success. Through Helios’ Florida Regional Student Success Initiative, the Foundation is helping underserved, minority, first-generation students from the state's large population centers in Miami, Orlando, and Tampa achieve a postsecondary education. Since 2006, the Foundation has invested more than $200 million in education programs and initiatives in both states. To learn more about Helios, visit