Teaching Children of Poverty Scholars Membership Policies for Undergraduate and Graduate Students

2022- 2023


Mission:  Teaching Children of Poverty Scholars (TCOPS) is a voluntary, professional organization dedicated to formal study of the impact of poverty on school success and the ways in which cognitive neuroscience can provide the foundation for high-yield interventions and accommodations designed to reveal often-hidden potential.  

Membership:  This voluntary organization is open to Undergraduate and Graduate Education Majors, as well as In-service public school teachers.  

Regular meetings are convened three times per semester to facilitate networking and professional study of modules aligned with high-yield teacher practices.  

‘Foundations of Practice’ and ‘25 key practices’ comprise the TCOPS content for study.  Individual topics are explored during each meeting, and Modules are open and available in Blackboard at any time.  

Certificate of Completion
Scholars utilize a standardized template to represent their learning of Module content in TCOPS journals.  Journals are submitted for review and upon successful completion; Scholars can earn Certificates of Completion for each module of study. 

Service and Leadership Recognitions
Scholars will have the opportunity to participate in service and/or leadership opportunities, and Certificates of Service or Leadership Certificates will be awarded to Scholars who volunteer to assist the organization with service and/or leadership projects.

Graduating Seniors
Members who plan to graduate within the academic year may request access to additional modules in order to complete successfully those required for graduation recognitions (TCOPS Stoles and/or Medallions).


Regular Meetings

Three regular meetings are held in both the Fall and Spring semesters, and Scholars are encouraged to attend as many and as much of these meetings as their schedules allows.  For 2021-2022, meetings will be held virtually via Zoom, but any Face-to-Face meetings are generally held in the conference room of the Pee Dee Education Center at 520 Francis Marion Road on the campus of Francis Marion University.

Optional Meetings/Additional Activities

Optional meetings and additional activities may be scheduled to provide enhanced opportunities for networking, service, leadership and study.  Attendance at these events is encouraged, but not required (unless substituted for a required meeting absence).

Absentee Submissions

Attendance at Regular Meetings is documented through active participation.  For Zoom meetings, this active participation involves, but is not limited to, responding in the Chat to questions/tasks posed throughout the meeting.  Members who cannot attend the entire meeting or who must be absent from a required meeting will be able to access associated content through on-line videos, and in addition to journal representations, absentee substitution activities and/or exit quizzes are required to regain Good Standing. Currently, a Missed Meeting Template is being used as the substitution activity, so anyone needing to return to Good Standingshould contact Ms. Brandis (jbrandis@fmarion.edu) for access to the template.  

Student Membership:  GOOD STANDING Status

Student Membership for TCOPS is open to both undergraduate and graduate students, and modules completed in undergraduate programs may be carried over into graduate TCOPS membership. 

Please note:  The TCOPS organization welcomes any and all involvement, however, the following are required to be considered a Scholar in Good Standing, and only a Scholar in Good Standing can potentially earn certificates and other graduation recognitions


Student Members in Good Standing pay semester dues of $5 each semester OR participate in the Food Driveby contributing three (3) canned goods or non-perishable food items.  In addition, ALL scholars must complete an Information Survey and submit a current picture as part of their initiation/continuation into the organization. Dues can be paid/submitted in person at the Center office or through the Marketplace. Survey and current pictures should be submitted electronically.


Student Members in Good Standing attend and fully participate in all regular monthly meetings.  Should an absence be necessary, a member may recover Good Standing status by successfully completing the associated online module and related absentee substitution activity/exit quiz (see Absentee Submission for more details).   

Module Submissions

Student Members in Good Standing submit completed journal representation of the modules discussed during the Regular Meetings each semester.  It is highly recommended that members submit related journal entries within one month of module exposure.

Stoles & Medallions

Student Members who hold Good Standing status (as described above) and who have submitted the minimum three (3) foundation modules journal representations prior to the predetermined semester deadline may purchase and wear at commencement a TCOPS Stole.  

TCOPS Medallions are awarded (at no charge) to Student Members in Good Standing (as described above)  who have earned certificates of completion of TCOPS content, as follows:

Required Three Foundations Why Poverty (and Resources) Matter; 

  1. Poverty Data Sources , and
  2. Neuroscience and the Classroom and  
  3. At least 15 of the 25 Practices 

TCOP Scholars of DistinctionSpecial Scholar of Distinction status is awarded to Student Members in Good Standing who have earned certificates of completion for Three Foundations and All 25 Practices.

Deadline for Submission:
Graduating seniors must submit all activities no later than April 15 (Spring Graduation) or November 15 (Fall Graduation) in order to be included in graduation requirements.