BTSA and CLAD bullying A STRAIGHT ANSWER, PLEASE!

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by senseijoao, Aug 28, 2008.

  1. senseijoao

    senseijoao Rookie

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    Aug 28, 2008

    Hey all,

    In my last district, I decided not to do BTSA. There weren't any consequences that I knew of. When I started my second job, I took the CLAD testing (all 8 hours of it), and am one test short of finishing the entire sequence. I'll probably sign up for the December test, if anything to put it behind me and on my resume.

    However, I am wondering about this BTSA thing. How serious is this? Should I even bother?

    Is it bad for your career, or likely to destroy it completely? I know that BTSA is required for a CLEAR credential, but frankly, I might leave the profession in 1 - 2 years, and I wonder if the investment is worthwhile. They still haven't filled a math teacher position at the H.S. I work at, so I suppose I'm safe until the end of the year.

    But I've combed google, I've combed the boards, and I've got nothing. What happens to the people who don't go? Is this a bluff, or should we take this seriously? Honest accounts, please, the more anecdotal the better.
     
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  3. raneydae

    raneydae Companion

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    I was under the impression that after 5 years, without clearing your credential (through BTSA or advanced coursework), that your Preliminary credential would no longer be valid - at that point, I don't know what you'd have to do to get it valid again, or if you're SOL. It's worth checking into with the Commission. Find out what happens if those five years pass and you haven't cleared them yet.

    After this school year, if you're still even remotely entertaining the idea of ever continuing to teach in the future, you should probably sign up for BTSA. I think it has to be COMPLETED before 5 yrs. is up.

    If you are "lucky" enough to be working at a private school or somewhere that can't offer you a BTSA program, you might be elligible to take the advanced coursework instead. I was able to go that route, and I cleared my credentials in 6 months. Yeah, I had to pay $6000 for the classes, but to me, it was worth it!
     
  4. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    I'm assuming you have your prelim credential. With this credential, it will expire in five years. Going through BTSA allows you to get a Clear credential, which can be renewed every five years. BTSA wasn't all that bad. I was given two mentors (normally you have one, but I had to switch school districts) who really helped me out and one of them helped me to get a job in the first district I worked in. There is some busy work, but honestly, you can get a lot of it done if you take a few weekends to work on it and stay on top of it. Plus, in my county, we were given money to spend in the media center. I ended up getting $200 when all was said and done to purchase stickers, pointers, books, birthday kit, etc.
     
  5. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    BTSA was horrible. It was a complete waste of time and energy for me.

    However, as was said, to clear your credential you gotta do it. It is a 2 year process and needs to be done by year 5 so you figure out the timing.
     
  6. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I have 2 credentials, both preliminary. One is Mild/Moderate Disabilities, the other is Multiple Subjects. From what I understood of it, if you have the SB 2042, all new teachers have to participate in BTSA for 2 yrs to get their Level II. This is for the Multiple Subjects credential. I've taught 1 yr of special ed so far & did BTSA, so I finished 1 yr. I still have to do a 2nd yr before my credentials expiration date, which is 9/2011 or else, I guess I LOSE BOTH CREDENTIALS. :unsure: I have to get hired somewhere again by the 2010-11 school yr. I also have 1 more college class to take. I've got my Clear CLAD, which has no expiration date.

    I wonder what happens if you're not hired by the time your credentials expire? :unsure:

    Unfortunately, there's no way to just pay a renewal fee & renew the prelim credential. That's what I found out from the CA Commission on Teacher Credentialing.
     
  7. Exclaimation Po

    Exclaimation Po Habitué

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    Aug 29, 2008

    I'm not sure if BTSA changed everywhere, but it's now a 1 year process in my general geographic area. So, the time committment is less. It's stil crap, but if you want a clear credential, you've gotta do it (or the classes if you're allowed).
     
  8. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Aug 29, 2008

    Exclamation Po,

    What district is your BTSA program through? Is it for teachers who completed a traditional credential program, or for teachers who did district internships? There doesn't seem to be anything like what you describe around here except the early completion option.

    senseijoao,

    I have never met someone who was required to do BTSA and didn't. Why? Because there aren't teaching in public schools any longer...

    If BTSA is required for your clear credential, and you want to keep teaching in California public schools, you have to complete BTSA. Your prelimary credential expires after five years. The only alternative is the course work option, and it is only available if your district does not offer you an induction program like BTSA.

    FWIW if you have two years of teaching experience, you can use BTSA's early completion option and do it in one year or less.

    I doubt you will lose your job because you do not do BTSA. But you will lose your job as soon as your preliminary credential expires.

    As for CLAD, state law requires you to have an appropriate English learner authorization if you teach in a classroom with an English learner. And in California, there are very few classrooms without at least one. Districts used to overlook the lack of the authorization. But most of the districts around here have already required all teachers to get it to keep teaching, and all new hires are required to be as well. This one could bite you at the end of any year. I have met numerous teachers who whined about having to get ceritified by the end of the summer or lose their jobs. The good news is that most recently credentialled teachers already have the equivalent as part of the SB 2042 credential.
     
  9. Exclaimation Po

    Exclaimation Po Habitué

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    Aug 30, 2008

    Riverside, Inyo, Mono, and San Bernardino counties are in a coalition together (RIMS). I did a year in Riverside and a year in San Bernardino. This year they've changed BTSA so that it's just one year instead of two.
     
  10. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Hmmm....

    I know BTSA is in transition here. Maybe this is the direction it is headed, too.
     
  11. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    Argh! This is so frustrating to read. I taught two years in Michigan, and moved out here last year. I did half a year in San Francisco schools, doing BTSA while I was there. Of course, I did not finish the year. It was horrible and I was glad to leave it behind. I'm now at a private school and thought I would never have to think about this again. I thought it was a purely school district policy. This is so frustrating to hear that it's a state requirement. I spent $3000 on my stupid CLAD coursework (I had to rush DVD courses before the Jan. deadline last year), and now I'm going to have to pay MORE for this stupid BTSA???? I've already done five years to get my degree. I would rather spend that money on a masters, and just move past the teaching to administration or curriculum, but I don't want to let my teaching certificate expire ever.

    This just ruined my night.
     
  12. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    Wait. I just looked up my online creditial pages, and it doesn't say anything about BTSA on the requirements for renewal. It says CLAD (check), competency test for my single subject one, and a masters degree. Does anyone else have BTSA listed? Is that the key? Do you have that listed under your renewal requirements, senseijoao?
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You took the CLAD courses rather than just taking the CTEL exam, Jem?
     
  14. Jem

    Jem Aficionado

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    Yeah. I was told when I moved out in June 2007 that I would need to get my CLAD before Jan 2008, because then they were changing it over to something else. So I basically had 6 months to get it done. I could take the test right then (it was offered only once in the June/July time frame), but if I didn't pass it, I would have to retake it right before the deadline. I didn't trust myself to pass it, never having been taught ANYTHING about English Language Learners (not high on the priority list in Michigan). So I rush ordered a DVD course from San Diego and watched 120 hours of the most boring lecturer in the world. My husband and I called her Becky the CLAD Lady. She lived with us the month of October, and almost caused our divorce. I got the papers written 3 days before the deadline, and got my credential just in time to quit my job and get a new job at a private school which could care less. But now I know that it was a good thing, because I'll need it to renew.

    I'm going to have to call on this BTSA on Tuesday.
     
  15. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Gee whiz, Jem: from what I've read of your posts on this page, you would have done fine on CTEL.
     
  16. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    if BTSA is not listed under your requirements you should be fine. It was listed under mine until I completed it.
     
  17. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    I have an SB 2042 preliminary credential. It has renewal code R141 which means it cannot be renewed and I have to complete an approved induction program (read BTSA) for my clear credential.

    Jem,

    If you had a credential from another state and two years experience, I doubt you have to complete BTSA. You aren't a beginning teacher. The whole purpose of the program is theoretically to support new teachers so they are successful and stay in the profession. Of course, sometimes it seems like the purpose is to torture new teachers...
     
  18. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    The year I completed so far was through RIMS. So you mean it's now only 1 year, so I'm actually done?! :D OR does this just go into effect for those who started BTSA THIS 2008-09 school year? I hope not.
     
  19. senseijoao

    senseijoao Rookie

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    I knew there was a straight answer lurking on the brains of these forum-goers! Thanks a million.

    I might be going for a CFA or into financial engineering in a couple of years, and I really need to know what I would be risking if I didn't do it. I know our participation is necessary to support the administrative bloat, so they try to rope us in ASAP.

    I wonder what would happen to those lovely "teacher retention" statistics if you included all of the teachers that left the field for administrative positions in order to make BTSA possible? Hmm.
     
  20. senseijoao

    senseijoao Rookie

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    About CLAD...Why the heck doesn't anybody ever talk about testing out of it?! It's not that hard. $300 and a Saturday would take care of it. I only failed one of them, but that's because my brain goes numb after 5 hours of testing, and their session was 8. I have to come back for one, but I'm sure I'll ace it. Even with my lame answers, I missed the mark by two points!

    I know some teachers prefer the coursework option to acquire more credits toward their credentials on the salary schedule, but I also am pretty sure that few universities will accept those credits for a master's program. Even the ones offered by Stanford...
     
  21. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    People talk about testing out of it, senseijoao. But many fewer people have to worry about it than have to worry about BTSA, because most credential programs (and, I think, all the CSU programs) have included CLAD coursework.

    By the way, if you haven't gotten hold of one of Diaz-Rico's useful books, you should. My very acute friend 25YearsIn really likes Diaz-Rico & Weed's Cultural, Language and Academic Diversity Handbook, 3d ed., which was for the earlier incarnation of the test, and I would expect you could find it used; Diaz-Rico herself has a more recent book, the title of which I think is California Teachers of English Learners Handbook (anyway, the acronym is CTEL - too cute), and I would expect it to be as good, and she's got a non-acronym book out as well.
     
  22. Exclaimation Po

    Exclaimation Po Habitué

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    Mrs. I Sadly, no. I have friends who did BTSA year 1 last year and still have to do year 2. Anyone who starts BTSA this year only has to do one year. It really sucks.
     
  23. yarnwoman

    yarnwoman Cohort

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    WOW! I am starting BTSA this year. I attend orientation this Thursday. I hope I am a one year person. I am in the RIMS area, so I am very hopefull. It says may need BTSA on my credential.
     
  24. senseijoao

    senseijoao Rookie

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    This is funny. My last district asked me to do it. I asked them if it was voluntary, and when they said "yes," I said, "no thanks!"

    Now that I've walked on the first year, I start this year on the new schedule. And guess what? The new schedule only takes a year!

    muhuhuhahaa.

    I think it's called FASST as opposed to CFASST. Acronymns. Who cares anymore?
     
  25. senseijoao

    senseijoao Rookie

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    Ah, yes, thanks. I started reading the second one two days before the exam. CTEL 2, IMHO, is the one where you actually have to know stuff like legal precedents, specific accomodations...you know, things you have to STUDY. So I barely failed it, and need to take it again. Cheers to the hard-working people at the CTEL site to have the registration down. It's good we pay for our own employer's training to begin with; now they're not even doing their job. :/

    Robbery. I plan on reading the CTEL book thoroughly and re-taking it, once the mighty NES minions allow.
     
  26. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Yeah, I'm afraid that even if the new rule applied to me where I only had to do just 1 year (which I already completed), I'd still have to do a 2nd year. I'm different because I have 2 credentials that I need to get Level IIs for: My multiple subjects AND my special ed mild/mod disabilities credentials. I taught special ed 1 yr so far & plan on teaching special ed again, so I'd have to do BTSA to mke up for the multiple subjects part of it. :mad:
     
  27. Exclaimation Po

    Exclaimation Po Habitué

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    Mrs I. I don't know aaaaannnnything about clearing SpEd credentials! But yeah, you'll have to clear the multiple subject. But hey! Once you clear that, if you add something else (science or something) you won't have to clear it again!
     
  28. KayleeBug23

    KayleeBug23 New Member

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    private schools?

    So does anyone know if you can complete the BTSA program at a private school? I can't even get a job at a public school here where I live. I'm working at a private school now and I'm wondering if its possible to complete it here...? any thoughts?
     
  29. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    Some private schools have an agreement with local districts whereby you can do BTSA at that district or county office. I would call your county superintendent's office and ask.
     
  30. Sshintaku

    Sshintaku Comrade

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    Yea, there might be a school district that will let you in, but you'd have to probably pay. There's also some private universities that offer it.

    In my district, they're really pushing toward 1 year completion, because they don't know if they'll have funding next year.
     
  31. Harper

    Harper Companion

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    Good to know! I earned my credential out of state and did not take CLAD classes (was a non-issue where I was.) Now, I have to deal with it before my prelim expires.
     
  32. Harper

    Harper Companion

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    Some private schools offer it. Mine does now through a cooperative system with other local private schools, but did not when I went through the process. I could have gone to local public school district, but then I would have had to pay out of pocket. Instead, I took classes online through UCSD and got college credit for them. Was not as pricey as I thought it would be (still not cheap) and the classes were pretty easy and each only a month long.
     

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