Alternative Certficiation Teacher

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Ms. Gray, Jul 11, 2017.

  1. Ms. Gray

    Ms. Gray Guest

    Jul 11, 2017

    Hi everyone,

    I graduated in April 2017 and have taken a job in staffing. I love my boss and my job, but I don't see this as my "career" and I want to do something more meaningful with my work. I got my Bachelor's in Communication, but I've always wanted to teach. (I picked my major based on having credits done in that area, so I could graduate sooner) Anyway, I am planning on taking my subject area exam in Septemeber and that should make me eligible for a temp. certificate (in Florida). My goal is to teach the 2018-2019 year. I just wanted to get other's opinions on coming into teaching with a non-education degree. Also, how did your interviews go? Any advice on the subject would be great. I feel discouraged because I don't have tangible teaching experience to talk about in an interview besides working in my mom's classrooms my whole life. Any advice on taking the SAE would be great. I want to teach upper elementary school or ESE.

    Thanks in advanced!!
     
  2.  
  3. Caramac48

    Caramac48 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2016
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    6

    Jul 11, 2017

    I was in your position last year. I highly recommend substitute teaching while you work towards passing your SAE exam. Subbing actually helped me land my fourth grade job! If you live near Orlando, a Tampa or Miami you will have no problems finding sub jobs. I subbed in both Lake and Polk County and was able to work every day with no issues. Check with your local district to see if they hire directly or use Kelly educational staffing.

    I highly recommend registering for the elementary k-6 content review at www.fl-pda.org. It really helped me prepare for the K-6 area exam. I would also get your General Knowledge test passed as soon as possible, as you have a year to pass it from the date your temporary certificate is issued. I used Khan Academy pre algebra and algebra 1 missions as test prep, and found the grammar lessons helpful for English Language Skills. REA's book was best in my opinion for reading recap. For the essay make sure you understand what they are looking for before you go in. You may also want to register in an Educator Preparation Institue to start working towards your professional certificate requirements as well.
     
  4. TXSPEDteacher

    TXSPEDteacher Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2017
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    3

    Jul 16, 2017

    This really depends on your area and the needs of the district. I've worked in two very highly rated districts and they would not hire ACP applicants except for high-need areas, such as special ed, ESL, secondary CTE courses. The board had a "rule" about only hiring teachers with experience OR who did university certification for all core subjects. Other districts nearby did not have this hard and fast rule, but they were not as highly rated. Your best bet might be to contact the HR department directly to find out if they hire ACP applicants for what you want to teach.

    I think the biggest pitfall to one of these programs is that if you haven't been in the classroom since you were in school, it can be sort of a culture shock. Schools and students have changed so much in the last 5-15 years. Student teaching, substitute teaching, etc, gives you a chance to get your feet wet.
     
  5. TexasTch

    TexasTch Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2017
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    3

    Aug 15, 2017

    Before I start, PLEASE DON'T GET OFFENDED. Having said that..I think the very best you could do for yourself AND your future students is to take education classes at a university. I have found that Alt. cert. teachers come with very little knowledge of developmental milestones and theories. I have worked with Alt. Cert. teachers who were never taught effective classroom management, etc. I think that your time would be better spent on the traditional route. They don't effectively prepare you for the real world. It seems wonderful and like you are going to change the world, where that isn't always possible, and some days you are lucky to get out alive! I know there are some good prep programs, but in Texas, we fought for the legislature to not approve this. They did anyhow. Then, teaching changed. Not for the better. I suppose a lot depends on the individual and how committed they are to learning outside of their program.
     
    bella84 and DressageLady like this.
  6. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,357
    Likes Received:
    1,289

    Aug 15, 2017

    You'll do great, just you wait! I have a non-education degree and my employer did not bat an eyelash when we discussed my resume. Speaking about this, I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and a Masters degree in Mathematics Education. Concerning the latter, even though the degree says "Mathematics Education" only like 4-5 classes were about math teaching strategies (actual education classes). The other were actual upper-division graduate-level mathematics courses, but I digress. Basically, what I am trying to say is that having a non-education degree can be a huge plus. It offers a different perspective and can enable you to switch careers if teaching does not work out. You definitely have options. For example, I had the option to get a Masters in education or my current Masters degree and I went with the latter because it enables me to teach community college classes over the summer when school lets out. Also, I can be an instructor at universities in their math departments because you only have to have a Masters degree in that subject area to be an instructor!

    I think it's awesome that you have a Communications degree. ;)
     
  7. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Aug 15, 2017

    I'm in NJ so the quality of our schools is significantly better. No offense.

    Here, you wouldn't get a job unless it was a really hard to fill spot (either because of content, school no one wanted to work in, or the philosophy of the school (like charter that filters aides through alt rt because they already know the system).

    You should question any school that would hire you without school experience.
     
  8. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    10,828
    Likes Received:
    2,672

    Aug 15, 2017

    I am equally proud of NJ schools, but I am also proud to be an excellent teacher who came into the profession through AR, after subbing for a decade. My content knowledge is deep and extensive, and I have acquired multiple endorsements through the years, from Elementary Ed, through three of the MS specialties, and K-12 including Science, SPED, and ESL. I am just one of the approximately 45-50% of NJ's teaching staff who entered the profession this way. I have never worked for a charter school, and the one thing that I would say to anyone considering AR is that you will work twice as hard, if you are doing it right, so if you don't like the concept of being a lifelong learner, this probably won't be a good fit. Of course, I would like to say something similar to more than a few traditionally educated teachers who simply veg in the job, refusing to grow and improve.

    How you are educated isn't as important, in many cases, as the fire you have for learning and improving in every way possible. Face it, there are lots of ways to be mediocre. If I had wanted to be average, I would never have chosen teaching. The truth is that I planned on being a veterinarian, but I am of an age when women were low minorities of acceptance. If I had waited another decade, the tide had turned and women became the majority of accepted applicants. In that time frame, I became a mother of a child with special needs, and I simply redirected my passion.

    Be very careful not to lump all AR candidate teachers into one homogenous group, because we are individuals with different strengths and weaknesses, just like every other teacher you will ever interview.
     
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  9. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Aug 15, 2017

    You did say you subbed for 10 years, you didn't enter from a temp agency.

    What subject area do you teach? What kind of school district (urban, suburban, rural, small population, pay scale, etc.). Be as specific as you feel comfortable. How long ago was your AR experience? I'm speaking to this market.

    I saw third grade on another post. To be more specific, your foot in the door job and district. Not now if it changed.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2017
  10. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    10,828
    Likes Received:
    2,672

    Aug 15, 2017

    I teach Science and SPED, using my MEd. in ESL to address my students who have learned English as a second language. I teach, currently, middle school ELA and Science, also with SPED. I have taught at a large suburban school with high ranking in the state, and now have chosen to work with a school that is 100% SPED. I entered AR in 2010, and was hired on my first interview to teach Honors and CP Biology. I immediately started studying at TCNJ for ESL once I recognized that I had an ELL who was no longer being given services, but struggling. I have never slowed down, virtually always taking classes.

    During the years that I subbed, my minimum grade I would teach was second, and I taught through eighth, usually 170+days per school year. I was highly requested, took many longer sub jobs along the way. I learned to appreciate SPED when doing some long term subbing, and it stuck. I think I make a decent salary, upper mid 60's. In a perfect world, I would have gone AR ten years earlier, but became the caregiver for my FIL with Alzheimer's for several years. I couldn't shake the feeling that I should be teaching, wanted to teach, and I simply went after it with an overwhelming desire not just to teach, but to be a great teacher. I am a lifelong learner in every sense of the word, and I hope to be that way until the day I die. My son is also an ESL teacher, but in VA. Maybe because I saw what a difference the right teacher could make in a child's life, teaching simply spoke to my heart.

    As far as communication, OP has time to learn more, take classes, grow as a teacher candidate. It isn't where you start the journey, but how you finish it.
     
  11. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,855
    Likes Received:
    623

    Aug 15, 2017

    A hard to staff position. Granted, not as hard as Physics but it's still Science. Atlantic City just turned to a virtual class because they couldn't even find an AR Chemistry (i think) teacher. Wait, I think I might have read that on this board lol. You had a decade in subbing and a cert in a hard to staff job.

    This isn't about your qualifications. I too have known many bad teachers that went through a traditional program. In reality though, no AR elementary, social studies, ela, etc teacher is going to get hired in the state of NJ in todays market without some other circumstances at play like a connection, long subbing in district, etc.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. Backroads,
  2. YoungTeacherGuy,
  3. Ryan Faulkner,
  4. miss-m
Total: 580 (members: 9, guests: 545, robots: 26)
test