Help! Newbie needs certification advice

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Leigh Enterlein, Jul 9, 2017.

  1. Leigh Enterlein

    Leigh Enterlein New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 9, 2017

    Hi everyone! I live in Maryland on the eastern shore and I have been trying to get a position as a business education teacher through Delaware's ARTC program. Basically Delaware will grant an emergency teaching license to someone with a bachelor's degree in critical needs areas (math, science, business education). Of course I have to find a school who will hire me with virtually no teaching experience and I wonder how likely that is. I have a B.S. in Business Admin and about 10 years of work experience but no teaching (although I have been a SAHM to two children for several years). I'm looking for a career change and teaching really appeals to me.

    So my next idea is to enroll in a teacher certification course and substitute teach until I get my certification. There are no alternative certification programs in my area (Worcester County) of Maryland. Just traditional schools that cost 20k+ and take two years of course work which as a Mom of two young kids I can't do.

    I have discovered an online program called Teach-Now that I can't find much information about...does anyone have any experience with them? They just received CAEP certification (the only online program in the country to do so!). I am wondering if I get certified through them (DC or AZ certificate), do a student teaching and then apply to transfer my cert to Maryland and Delaware if I could realistically get jobs. I'm a bit worried that an online program will be looked down upon by HR although I wonder if the CAEP cert would sway them?

    Also, both Teach for America and Relay have programs in Delaware for alternative routes to teaching that lead to certification and a Master's. I'm also thinking about applying to these programs as I think they would have a better reputation for HR departments. Of course TFA is not easy to get into and I've heard some mixed opinions about the program. Anyone have TFA/Relay experience?


    Does anybody have any info for me about the job market in Worcester County, Maryland and Sussex County, Delaware? I think I would try to get certified in Science and Business education or another critical needs area etc. to make the job search easier. I've heard not to do elementary ed as they are swamped with candidates..is that true?


    Any advice/opinions are very welcome and thank you!
     
  2.  
  3. CherryOak

    CherryOak Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2016
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    65

    Jul 9, 2017

    Welcome Leigh!

    I'm not familiar with the programs you've asked about or MD in general. So, I'll let someone in the know speak to those.

    However, I'll encourage some more soul searching from you. You seem to be looking for the quickest and cheapest way to land a teaching job. This is a good thing to research and consider. In addition, make sure you're putting a lot of effort in clarifying your end goal as that will be necessary to know when choosing paths. Landing that first job is hard, but you'll teach for ages afterwards. Teachers are ideally students of their fields forever. They read articles and books on their subject simply because they find them interesting. Five years from now, do you want to be reading about the latest business challenges, newest scientific discoveries, or the latest research in literacy development in children? (No need to tell me, but that's an example of what I would ask myself when considering science, business, or elementary.) What have you chosen to follow over the years out of curiosity? What would you find interesting discussing daily?

    In choosing which programs you'll take on, get a feel for which one will prepare you best. Consider it an investment in your effectiveness as a teacher. The first years are going to be challenging and the better prepared you are, the higher chance you'll be happy and stick with the career choice. I wish I could tell you which one is best, but I'm just not familiar with them.

    Best of luck in your research! Sub and try a lot out as you figure out where you would be happiest.
     
  4. Leigh Enterlein

    Leigh Enterlein New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 9, 2017

    HI CherryOak, thanks for your feedback and you make some good points. I've actually been thinking about becoming a teacher for several years but in the state where I used to live (West Virginia) there was no alternative teaching program available anywhere near my location (closest was two hours away!) and no online options. Paying for full-time daycare for my two young children (WV has the highest daycare costs relative to income in the US) while paying 10-20k for a masters degree in a field where I'll make 20K less than I used to was also not feasible. So now that I'm in a new location and my kids are a bit older I'm eager to get started with teaching right away. I do want to go back to school and get my Master's eventually but I'd prefer to teach, get an alternative certification and do that for a few years to make sure I love it and then either get my masters in education or pursue administration and become an assistant principle. What I do not want to do is get a master's first, teach for a couple of years and then decide that it's not for me.

    I do love business and I am thrilled that schools are offering business education now as it was not available when I was in high school. I've worked in many different facets of business; operations manager, accountant, started my own soap making business, I invest in stocks, etc. But I would be equally happy teaching earth science, biology or English as I have many interests. For example, in the last few months I've read books about teaching, marine biology, stock investment, learning German, real estate investment, pie making, sci/fi and fantasy. I'm a lifelong learner and bibliophile. :)

    As for looking for the quickest and cheapest option...that isn't necessarily my aim. I'm looking for a feasible route to teaching in which I can support my family, have health insurance for myself and my children and lay the groundwork for a new career in education within a year or so.






     
  5. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    5,926
    Likes Received:
    1,257

    Jul 10, 2017

    A quick search about both Maryland and Delaware indicate you have a steep mountain to climb, Leigh. I came to teaching through AR in NJ and believe the process can work for those with a lot of drive, real self starters who are always looking to learn. In looking at what Maryland and Delaware offer, I don't see an easy route for you that doesn't include acquiring your MAT. In my quick scan, I didn't see science as an option, but I may have missed it. The biggest question that I have is whether or not you will be able to easily acquire your certificate in MD after acquiring it from DE, as well as the commitment to DE if you go the route to acquire a science certification, since you are now looking at two years for the training and the agreement to teach another two years after those two years, or else you will not have a valid certificate to work with.

    You are in the wrong part of the state to be able to participate in Maryland's own program, which is what I would have recommended. This leaves you with very few "quick" options other than maybe TFA, and even that may be difficult to enter based on where you are. I would certainly want to do more research on that. I believe that in your case, an additional degree that leads to teaching may be your best bet, whether is is online or a brick and mortar institution. I was lucky - I had the credits, I found a job in NJ, I lived in NJ (a state requirement), I passed all of the Praxis exams, and I worked my behind off to be both teacher and student at the same time. I have since added a MEd., and I'm working on a second in SPED. I don't know much about TFA, other than the fact that they tend to need teachers in the same kind of schools you don't have easy access to in MD. I don't know much about DE, but that would be something to look into. If you are going to eventually want to teach closer to home in MD, you are going to want to find out what requirements you will need to meed to make that happen.

    I am not one to say what you want is impossible, but it may not be the same kind of path I was able to follow here in NJ. Another thing that I would worry about is the possibility that you may move before completing your AR requirements in DE, putting you back at square one. You may be in a situation/location where earning your MAT makes better sense, even if it is online and if it takes a little while to accomplish. I don't know much about the program you mentioned, but most major state universities have online courses that could lead to the MAT, maybe in your own time, so that debt doesn't accumulate. I wish you all the best. I understand wanting something that you didn't go to school for, but something that speaks to your heart. Perhaps you could sub while taking courses to offset the cost, but I don't know your specific circumstance. Best of luck!
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2017
  6. Leigh Enterlein

    Leigh Enterlein New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 12, 2017

    Hello everyone, thank you so much for your feedback and advice. I really appreciate it.

    I have looked at WGU extensively and read many, many reviews online. I'm concerned that some students report that there is very little oversight or help for students. I'm an independent learner so this doesn't completely scare me away, but I am concerned that hiring managers will not give an online degree much 'value', consider it a 'diploma mill' and favor applicants from traditional brick and mortar institutions. All of the online programs have student teaching experiences which is essential but I am concerned that after I graduate I won't be able to find a position. That said, I'm still considering WGU and I would love to hear from any teachers who have completed the program.

    Vickilyn, I have also thought about getting my MAT while substitute teaching. There are plenty of online programs to chose from. It would be an economic hardship but I could swing it if I chose an affordable University like WGU. I actually read one online article that said that it might be worse to get a Master's because poorer school districts will favor teachers with bachelors degrees because they can pay them less. I don't think this would be the case in MD or Delaware as many of the teachers seem to have Master's and even Ph.d's. Anyone have any experience with this though?

    I am also thinking about the TFA program in Delaware. Enrollment starts in August. Is there pushback against TFA and TFA teachers? Some people seem to really hate their programs.

    Again, thank you!
     
  7. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    5,926
    Likes Received:
    1,257

    Jul 12, 2017

    Do you know for certain that TFA works in your location? If they do, will you end up with a certificate, and can that certificate transfer to MD with little or minimal difficulty, or will you be obligated to DE for any additional time? These are the questions I would consider. If you are quite near to DE and DE has no residency requirements, then TFA is something to consider. Honestly, I don't believe that an online degree would be looked at harsher than alternate route, but I was AR and entered the job market without difficultly.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2017
  8. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,411
    Likes Received:
    474

    Jul 28, 2017

    TFA is good for what it is despite being painted as some evil empire. They give highly educated bodies to schools that need bodies because certified teachers aren't dying to work there or in always hard to staff positions. The goal of TFA is not to train teachers to teach for 20 years. They want idealy Ivy League transitioning students who will teach for a few years and then move on to positions where they can change academic/economic/social policy, etc. Getting into TFA might be harder than you realize.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Been There
Total: 426 (members: 2, guests: 304, robots: 120)
test