How Can I Earn an Emergency Teaching Credential?

Aspiring teachers who lack the proper certification might still be able to teach. Depending on your subject area and background, you may be able to get an emergency teaching credential. Read on for more about this teaching opportunity. Schools offering Early Childhood Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Emergency Teaching Credentials Defined

Emergency teaching credentials provide an alternative route for teachers without proper teaching credentials or training to teach within public or private schools that have an extreme need for teachers. They're designed for candidates who have completed bachelor's degree programs but haven't completed teacher preparation programs. They're typically offered in regions that have a greater need for teachers, such as urban areas.

You can gain an emergency credential through your state board of education; however, your hiring school will have to apply for the credential for you. The credential will allow you to teach students in your own classroom as long as you meet certain criteria. Credentials are available to contract and substitute teachers; however, the requirements and the certifications available may vary by state. Emergency certificates can last anywhere from 30 days to two years.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Median Salary (2014) $26,200 (for substitute teachers), $56,310 (for high school teachers)
Key Skills Communication skills, patience, resourcefulness, creativity
Job Outlook (2014-2024) 6% (for high school teachers)
Continuing Education Programs available for aspiring teachers with a bachelor's degree can help teachers gain employment beyond an emergency contract

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Emergency Teacher Requirements

To qualify for a state-issued emergency teaching credential, you can't hold a regular teaching credential. Another qualified candidate (a teacher certified in the subject area and grade level) must not be available in your district. In addition to holding a bachelor's degree, you must demonstrate proficiency in your subject area through having taken sufficient college credits or passing an exam.

Obtaining an emergency teaching credential to teach a core subject, such as math, English or science, as well as special education, may require you to possess additional skills, ensuring each class possesses a highly qualified teacher. To be highly qualified, you're required to complete or be enrolled in a teacher preparation program as well as possessing demonstrated content knowledge through a bachelor's degree or state testing. School districts must provide professional development skills to emergency licensed teachers through mentoring and supervision by a qualified teacher.

Substitute Teacher Requirements

Emergency teaching certifications are also available for substitute teachers. To gain a substitute emergency credential, you must have completed postsecondary education. The Arizona Department of Education, for example, requires at least an associate's degree, whereas the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing requires a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited university. Additional requirements may include a health assessment and a background check.

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  • Strayer University

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