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California Poets in the Schools (CalPoets) Poet-Teachers are independent contractors who work on a contract or freelance basis throughout California.  CalPoets’ Poet-Teachers are professional writers who choose to give back to their communities as Poet-Teachers. As members of California Poets in the Schools, Poet-Teachers serve as living models of the commitment to imaginative language and are uniquely capable of sharing an artist’s insights into the creative process.They should have demonstrated experience in the literary arts and be passionate about teaching school-aged youth in public school settings.  New CalPoets’ Poet-Teachers are paired with experienced mentors to prepare for classroom placement.  This is a great opportunity for poets at all stages of their careers.  Most Poet-Teachers achieve 1-10 teaching contracts per school year. 

*Please note:  As of January 2023, we are not actively seeking Poet-Teacher candidates in Los Angeles county as we have more qualified applicants from this region than we are able to train.  

Click here to fill out an application to become a Poet-Teacher.


Poetry Residency Fact Sheet


CalPoets Poet-Teachers work as independent contractors and are responsible for securing their own residencies. A standard CalPoets contract must be completed and signed by a school representative. Residencies begin as soon as a school, or a district representative authorized to commit funds, signs the approved CalPoets contract. Poetry residencies are designed to fit the needs of each school’s program. The basic one-hour teaching session fee can be $75-150, which includes preparation and follow-up time.  Poet-Teachers are independent contractors and negotiate their own rates with schools. For an additional negotiated fee, if stipulated in the contract, poet-teachers will edit and compile a student anthology representing the best writing from .the residency.

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