Connecticut Alternative Teacher Certification Programs
According to a report published by the U.S. Department of Education, Connecticut is dealing with teacher shortages in math, special education, bilingual education, foreign languages, and remedial reading, particularly in urban schools. The Connecticut Department of Labor projects a 20 percent increase in demand for special education, elementary, and secondary school teachers between 2008 and 2018. Data compiled by the National Center for Alternative Education shows that Connecticut hires over 7,000 new teachers every year, and that a significant percentage of them - approximately 12.5 percent - enter the profession through non-traditional routes.
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In order to qualify for an alternate certification program, a candidate must have a bachelor's degree in a field related to the subject that he or she wishes to teach. Additionally, prospective teachers must have earned a minimum of a 3.0 grade point average and must earn a passing score on the Praxis I test. After completing an approved alternate certification program, teachers will receive a 90-day provisional teaching certificate. Within those 90 days, individuals must pass the Praxis II test and undergo a mentoring program with an Alternate Route to Teacher Certification coach.
Two programs you may consider are Teach for America or an Alternate Route to Teacher Certification (ARC) program, such as the one offered by Saint Joseph College. Teach for America is a competitive program for college graduates who commit two years to teaching in low-income communities. Requirements include a 2.5 GPA and skills in leadership, organization, and critical thinking. The ARC program was instituted in 1988 to help mid-career professionals make the transition into a teaching career. ARC offers two sessions: one nine-week, full-time summer session, which takes place from June through August, and one session which takes place on Friday evenings and all day on Saturdays. The second session requires three out of four weekends each month from October through May. Both ARC sessions require a student-teaching experience.
Schools in Connecticut:
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