Texas Teacher Certification

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The Texas State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC) has implemented a rigorous set of requirements for Texas teacher certification. The Texas SBEC issues certificates in the following areas:

  • Early childhood through grade 4
  • Grade 4 through grade 8
  • Grade 8 through grade 12
  • All level certificates (early childhood through grade 12)
  • Educational Aid

Anyone who wishes to become certified to teach in the State of Texas must meet the following basic requirements:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. Every teacher candidate must have an academic major as well as teacher training courses. The only exception to the requirement for a bachelor’s degree is for individuals seeking Career and Technology certification to teach certain courses, such as welding.
  • Complete teacher training though an approved program. These programs may be part of the candidate’s college degree program or may be separate programs offered by colleges and universities, school districts, or other entities.
  • Successfully complete the teacher certification tests for the subject and grade level of interest.

Certification for Teachers Certified in Other States

Certified teachers from other states who wish to teach in Texas must meet all of the same basic criteria. A teacher with a certificate from another state or U.S. Territory may receive a one-year certificate for the same area providing that they meet specified requirements as determined by a review of credentials. During the period of the temporary certificate, the individual must pass the appropriate Texas certification tests. If the individual has passed a similar test administered outside of Texas deemed to be comparable to the Texas test then they may request an exemption from the Texas test. Comparable tests include tests administered in Arizona, Colorado, Michigan, New Mexico, Oklahoma, PRAXIS II and other ETS tests, and National Board of Professional Teaching Standards Exams. For a complete list and passing score information consult the SBEC web site.

Temporary Teacher Certificate

Starting April 2, 2004, a Temporary Teacher Certificate (TTC) is available. The TTC provides a means for people with a bachelor’s degree to enter the teaching profession while completing the other requirements for a Standard Certificate.

Texas Teacher Certification Tests

Starting in the fall of 2002, the SBEC began implementing a new testing program, Texas Examinations of Educator Standards or TEXES, to replace the existing Examination for the Certification of Educators in Texas (EXCET). The SBEC intends to replace all of the EXCET tests with new TEXES tests by 2006. In the intervening period, certification candidates may have to take both TEXES and EXCET exams to obtain their Standard Certificate.

Teacher Certificate Renewal

The Standard Certificate issued by the Texas SBEC must be renewed every five years. The criteria for renewal include:

  • The individual must hold a valid Standard Certificate that is not sanctioned or in the process of being sanctioned by the SBEC.
  • The individual must successfully pass a criminal history review.
  • The individual must not be in default of any student loan.
  • The individual must not be in arrears of child support.
  • The individual must complete 150 clock-hours of continuing professional education (CPE).
  • The individual must pay the the renewal fee of $20.00.

Standard Certificates have been issued since September 1, 1999. Educators holding lifetime certificates issued before this date do not have to renew their certificates. If they receive new certificates after September 1, 1999, then they will need to renew the new certificates every five years.

The Need for Teachers in Texas

The Texas SBEC estimates that Texas will need over 82,000 new teachers by the year 2008. The SBEC indicates that the need for teachers is particularly great in math, science, special education, foreign languages, technology applications, and bilingual education. The average teacher salary in Texas is $38,857.

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