Texas ACP recommendations?

Discussion in 'Student & Preservice Teachers' started by suzerich, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. suzerich

    suzerich Companion

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    Jun 3, 2008

    I am looking into ACP programs in Texas. I have worked in the museum field in the past, and also have an MLS in Library Science. My BA is in History and Anthropology. I would eventually like to get school library certification, but need two years of teaching experience to be certified. Two of the programs I am looking into are Iteachtexas and Web-Centric ACP (both online). I've looked at the region 10 & 11 programs, but they don't fit in my schedule. I will be going for 4-8 generalist (not sure I can pass the math though), or 4-8 Social Studies. I would like recommendations on the above two programs, and any others I might need to look at. I am planning to look at school districts/charter schools in Ellis County, maybe southern Dallas county. I understand from my research that finding a teaching position may not be as easy as I thought it would be. If anyone has information on the above areas and the job search, I'd appreciate it.


    Thank you,

    Suze
     
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  3. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    Jun 3, 2008

    Suze-

    Go to the websites of the districts in which you may want to work. Many of them have recommendations on certification and you can also get a feel on their view of alternative certification programs.

    Did you already go to an orientation at Region 10 or 11? I didn't know the schedule of classes until after I signed up. I just knew they would be at night or on Saturdays.

    Also, you may want to ask about highly qualified teacher status. There have been changes that if you just teach one subject like in middle school or high school, you need additional tests passed to be deemed highly qualified.

    I am not sure if this will apply to you, but I do think that in some cases a generalist is not good enough.

    Maybe search NCLB on the TEA website or highly qualified and see what you get.

    I went through Region 10 and I know of a couple teachers on here who did TexasTeachers.
     
  4. suzerich

    suzerich Companion

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    Jun 9, 2008

    Thanks for your reply. I signed up for the Web-Centric (etools4education) program today. I liked the fact that it was online and that they have videoconferencing, which doesn't leave you sitting completely out there alone.

    I signed up for the 4-8 Generalist, but I don't think I can handle the math. I really like the idea of teaching History, Social Studies or Technology applications. I like showing people (kids and adults) how to use the computer. So, I may change the content area, or may take both.

    This program was listed on one of the school district's websites that I am applying to, so even though it is not a recommendation, I doubt that they would put a program on their site that they would not consider.

    I saw ideas for taking the TAKs tests on another thread and just went through the 4th grade one. I did well on the revising and editing, not so good on Math, and surprisingly not as good on Reading. I need to go back and look at it again. I may have got my Question #'s and answers mixed up. I then looked at the 8th grade test and I would have to cram to pass the math section on it. I can remember my Dad helping me with the basic Math classes in college and it took so long before I actually "got" it. I could probably handle math up to 6th grade, but I would not want to be a kid sitting in my class for any grade over that.
     
  5. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    Jun 10, 2008

    Suze-

    You will do great. That is cool they have the video conferencing. Mine didn't have that.

    I don't want to sound negative but I did want to draw something to your attention. In the district in which I work, the computer teacher at the elementary level (k-5th) is an aide position. This is really a sore spot with them because the other specials teachers are paid teacher salaries. Aides make less than half the teacher pay. I'm thinking in middle school it is a teacher position. This probably varies from district to district in Texas but I am not sure. You maybe could check by going to a district web site and pulling up available jobs for a computer teacher and see what the pay scale is.

    There are a lot of other Texas teachers on here. Maybe one of them will know.

    Lemon
     
  6. Daisyjune

    Daisyjune Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2009

    Dear Suze,

    Can you please tell me your thoughts about the etools4education program. I am considering it as well but I would like to talk with someone who went through this program before making a commitment. Any of your recommendations are appreciated.
     
  7. suzerich

    suzerich Companion

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    Aug 30, 2009

    I like the program, but I don't have a job, and have had very few interviews. I'm also closer to Dallas and most people have never heard of it. I never have to wait very long before my questions are answered. The program is in 4 modules, all online. Its interactive, but would be nice if they went far enough to have a forum more like this. The forums are specific to certain areas of the program and there just doesn't seem to be a lot of interaction where it is not required. I think this changes when you go to the chats for preservice and while you are actually an intern. I would contact the program and ask to have others in your area give recommendations. Also call the school districts that you are interested in and ask for recommendations for a program. From my experience, they do tend to have preferences. The districts around me like A&M- Commerce and work pretty closely with them. Etools also does not give the option of student teaching, which is something you might consider. Good luck. It would be nice if there was some sort of sounding board for programs, but there just isn't. Please let me know if you need any further information.
     
  8. jedipwnces

    jedipwnces Rookie

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    Sep 6, 2009

    Hi, Suze!

    I currently live (and teach!) in the DFW area, and I went through Texas Teachers (texasteachers.org). It's relatively inexpensive, and the training is administered efficiently, I think. I took the summer courses, so it was like two solid weeks of training. I'm not sure that's better than having it spread out over the course of a year... but it was nice to have it taken care of so I could focus on taking my tests. They didn't do test prep-- you're on your own for that.

    I found that the best way to secure a position, AC or otherwise, seems to be to get a job in the school in an alternative position. I was a teaching assistant for two years in the district, and was (finally!) hired on as a teacher for this year. It took a while, but the experience and connections you develop this way are invaluable! I had so many people on my current campus rooting for me last spring when I was interviewing! I know that support contributed to my being hired for the fall.

    The trouble with going the TA to Teacher route is the pay... TAs make next to nothing. I was still living with my parents, so it wasn't a problem, but it's literally like half the salary of a teacher in my district. You do get benefits, though... so that's nice. :)

    I also know people who have gone through Region 10-- I think the Region centers probably have their own certification programs. I considered it when I was shopping for a program in 2007, but I found they weren't very forthcoming with information about money, and at the time, that was a concern for me. That was also a couple of years ago-- a lot can happen in a couple of years!

    Take care! Good luck finding a great program!

    Edit:
    I just realized this post was from 2008. I'm gonna leave mine up because maybe someone browsing will find it useful, after they stop laughing at how silly it was for me to post this. Oops.
    :sorry:
     
  9. SouthernTwist

    SouthernTwist Rookie

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    Nov 3, 2009

    How did you like Texas Teachers? I spoke to someone at the agency and they said they had a forum of some sort....do you know of this? I looked high and low and didn't see one so I'm not sure what they were speaking of.
     

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