Great teachers are critical to our city’s future success. Stride is a free program that offers the support early career teachers need to thrive as educators in Memphis. In addition to social outings and fun opportunities to explore Memphis, Stride provides an environment of collaborative learning, peer networking, and professional development. By engaging teachers in their 1st, 2nd, or 3rd years in the classroom, Stride helps retain our community’s most promising educators.


"I honestly believe that the Stride program should be a requirement for teacher prep programs in college and grad school. The information I took away is worth so much more than I have received from any schooling or professional development, and it has allowed me the mental health and clarity to understand what I am going to into when I enter the classroom again this fall. If I did not have Stride, I would probably never teach again."

"Stride provides the types of professional developments that you actually want to attend- the ones that are informative and give you useful tools that you can implement in your classroom."

-Joanna Cumbie

"I think Stride gave me access to a lot of great professional and social experiences. On the professional side, Stride offered seminars that helped me become a better and more confident educator during my first year teaching. As someone new to Memphis, I was also able to branch out of my comfort zone and participate in activities that made me feel like I was a part of the community here. "

-Madeline Martinez-Fuentes

"Stride was a great way for me to experience different offerings in Memphis while also teaching me the importance of self care and progression. I really feel as if through Stride I found a voice for myself and became more confident in using it. I also grew so much as an educator because I was able to gain more focus and structure."

-Faith Ambrose

"Stride connects you with other teachers in our community and provides a safe and fun place to decompress, process and commune. I have thoroughly enjoyed every event I have been to."

-Meredith Miyake

"Stride has expanded my social and professional circle in Memphis. It not only provides fun social events that make me take time for myself but also develops me as a teacher."

-Amber Weir

"I feel fed in my belly, brain and heart when I leave."

-Jayme Soule

"Through Stride, I truly learned more research about toxic stress, trauma awareness, and strategies for labeling my triggers. I feel like I'm able to use this right away and it doesn't take much planning - just organizing my thoughts."

-Jayme Soule, on "Lap 4: The Healthy Teacher"

"I would describe my experience as exceeding expectations. The planned sessions were high-quality, extremely organized, and well-paced, as well as interesting. The other participants were interesting and outgoing."

-Leann Beard

"Stride has given me more than just professional development, it has helped me build a community and learn so much more about myself."

-Taylor Carter

"I would describe my experience as refreshing. The program and the activities have afforded me the opportunity to get to know different individuals in the teaching profession and enhance my professional and social circles."

-Dominique Hardin

"Stride is an amazing program full of networking opportunities and a wealth of information designed to make you a well-rounded effective educator in your professional and personal life."

-Tabitha Birdsong

"Stride has been a wonderful opportunity for me to invest in myself! I had no idea how much fun it would be, how therapeutic, and how exciting to connect with other teachers throughout the city that aren't in my immediate social network."

-Valen Warner

"I looked forward to every session! I loved having time to slow down in the middle of my busy week to reflect and talk to fellow teachers. There is power in walking through life with people who have similar struggles and can tell you what works for them."

-Katherine Bare

"I was immediately and pleasantly surprised at how genuine this community has been. It’s truly a joy to show up to events and meet new people who understand what it’s like to be a new teacher in Memphis, but are also eager to be here and make a difference."

-Parker Schramme

Get Connected

Are you an early career teacher looking to embrace Memphis, engage with a supportive community, and evolve professionally? The Stride cohort begins in September every year, and all applications are due by September 1st.

Know an early career teacher who could benefit from Stride?

Nominate them today!

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What Stride Means for You

For early-career teachers, Stride will enhance your resiliency as an educator, your affection for the classroom, and your affinity for the city of Memphis.

Stride for Teachers

Stride for Employers


Q: What are the program requirements?

A: Stride applicants must be within your 1st – 3rd years of teaching, not including student teaching or residency. You must submit an application and receive acceptance into the Program, then make a commitment to attend all scheduled sessions. We are looking for applicants with diverse perspectives, leadership potential, and a passion to better themselves and their community.

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Curriculum Information

To view the Spring 2023 calendar, click here  

During the course of a 9 month school year, teachers within their 1st – 3rd years of teaching will meet monthly at different locations around the city. The program divides its time between professional development and social engagements. Program participants will gain key leadership development skills focused on conflict management, effective communication, and personal development.

If you have any questions about the schedule, curriculum or application process, please contact

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