Professional Certifications

  • I have my Residency Certificate, how long do I have to obtain Professional Certification?

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    Your Residency Certificate is valid for five years.  If you have not completed requirements for the Professional Certificate during that five-year period, you may renew your Residency Certificate once, for a two-year period, if the college/university in whose program you are enrolled verifies that you are making satisfactory progress in the program.

    If you have not completed provisional status with a school district, and thus cannot be admitted to a Professional Certificate program, you may renew your Residency Certificate once, for a five-year period, upon completion of fifteen quarter (ten semester) credits since the issuance of the Residency Certificate.

    Any other renewal would require an appeal to the State Board of Education.

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  • When can I start a Professional Teachers Certificate program?

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    You must have completed provisional status with a school district or have a statement from your employment school district supporting your enrollment in this program to be admitted to a Professional Certificate program, but you may complete the pre-assessment seminar prior to admission to the program.  Each school district, in accordance with state law, determines when you have completed provisional status, but typically it takes two years of teaching experience in the same school district to complete provisional status.

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  • What is a Professional Teachers Certificate, and who needs it?

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    The Professional Teachers Certificate is the second, or advanced level, certificate in the certification system that went into effect in 2000.  If you hold a Residency Teachers Certificate, you will need to obtain a Professional Teachers Certificate.

    (If you hold a valid Initial Teachers Certificate, you may meet requirements and obtain a Continuing Teachers Certificate as long as you do not let the initial certificate expire.  You are allowed one renewal of a valid Initial Certificate after August 31, 2000.  Or, if you hold an Initial or Continuing Certificate, you may choose to obtain a Professional Teachers Certificate.)

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  • How Do I get a Professional Teachers Certificate?

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    There are currently two routes to the Professional Teachers Certificate.  Both routes require that you have completed course work in issues of abuse, which is required by state law.

    Route 1

    Complete a Professional Teachers Certificate Program at a college or university in Washington.

    State approved certification program offered at one of 22 colleges or universities listed below.

    Route 2

    Hold a valid certificate issued by the National Board for Professional Teachers Standards (NBPTS).  Information about NBPTS certification in Washington is available online.

    Antioch University
    Central Washington University
    City University
    Eastern Washington University
    Gonzaga University
    Heritage College
    Northwest College
    Pacific Lutheran University
    Pacific Oaks College
    Seattle Pacific University
    Seattle University
    St. Martin’s College
    The Evergreen State College
    University of Puget Sound
    UW Tacoma, Bothell, Seattle
    Walla Walla College
    Washington State University
    Western Washington University
    Whitman College
    Whitworth College

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  • How Will the District Support You?

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    FWPS is in partnership with Seattle Pacific University to offer the Pre-Assessment Seminar and Culminating Seminar at in-district sites.

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  • What is involved in a Professional Teachers Certificate program?

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    While the program may vary somewhat from college to college, there are certain elements that are common to all programs:

    Candidates must demonstrate competence in three standards (Effective Teaching, Professional Development, and Leadership) and must demonstrate a positive impact on student learning.  All the colleges/universities with approved programs have agreed to common performance indicators and products that candidates will present as evidence of competence.

    All programs will begin with a pre-assessment seminar during which candidates will develop a Professional Growth Plan (PGP) with the help of their Professional Growth Team (PGT).  The team will consist of a college/university representative, a school district representative and a colleague chosen by the candidate.  The Professional Growth Plan will be based on an assessment of the candidate’s need for assistance in order for that person to demonstrate the required competencies.  It may consist of mentoring, course work, peer coaching, workshops, etc.

    After the Professional Growth Plan has been completed, a culminating seminar will conclude each program, during which the candidate will present the products that demonstrate standards have been met and that the candidate has had a positive impact on student learning.

    The program at each college will have some unique characteristics and the delivery system may vary as well.  Candidates should expect a minimum of fifteen quarter (ten semester) credits in each program, but there may be more – depending on the candidate’s Professional Growth Plan.

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  • Can an experienced teacher from out-of-state, qualify for without enrolling in a program?

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    Unless an individual applying for certification from out-of-state holds a certificate from the National Board for Professional Teaching standards, the individual will need, a minimum, to complete a preassessment seminar.  During the seminar the college/university will evaluate the individual’s background and assess his/her knowledge and skills to determine whether or not the teacher’s course work and previous certification activities are equivalent to the approved Professional Certificate program and meet the Professional Certificate standards/criteria.  If equivalency is determined, the individual will apply for the Professional Certificate through the college/university.

    If the individual’s previous experience and course work are not equivalent, the individual will need to proceed through the program.

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