Rhode Island Teaching Certification Renewal Requirements

The state of Rhode Island requires that teachers work effectively as part of the license renewal process. The specific criteria teachers must meet is covered in this guide. Schools offering Early Childhood Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Teaching License Renewal in Rhode Island

All teachers in Rhode Island will need to meet specific performance ratings in order to renew their teaching license. The renewal process for current and expired licenses is outlined below for prospective and current teachers in Rhode Island.

Required DegreeBachelor's degree
Required Degree FieldEducation
Required TestsPraxis exam in desired grade level or subject area
License Renewal Period3 years for initial teaching certificate
5 years for professional teaching certificates
7 years for advanced teaching certificate
License Renewal RequirementsPerformance rating of 'developing' or higher
Average Salary for Teachers in Rhode Island (2018)*$71,990 (Elementary School Teachers)
$72,180 (Middle School Teachers)
$71,440 (High School Teachers)
Job Outlook for Teachers Nationally (2016-2026)*7% (Elementary School Teachers)
8% (Middle School Teachers)
8% (High School Teachers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Certification Requirements

Rhode Island's Approved Program Pathway is for students who enroll in an approved educator training program for their bachelor's degree. Potential teachers will receive training to become fully certified in in their desired grade level or content area. All teaching candidates in Rhode Island must earn passing scores on the appropriate Praxis exam for their desired grade level or content area of certification.

All teaching candidates in Rhode Island will need to apply for full, initial certification via the state's RIDEmap website. The initial certificate is valid for three years. During this time, new teachers will be assigned a coach as part of the Beginning Teacher Induction Program.

Initial Certification Renewal

There is currently only one renewal requirement for all teaching certificates issued after January 1, 2012. Teachers simply need to provide documentation of a satisfactory performance rating based on state-approved performance metrics. The metric generally includes four categories: highly effective, effective, developing, and ineffective. Renewal requires submitting documentation of at least one performance rating of 'developing' or higher over the lifetime of their license. All teachers who meet this requirement will be eligible to upgrade to their professional teaching certificate, which is valid for five years.

Renewal Process

Teachers can apply for their certificate renewal on January 1 of the year their certificate will expire. They will need to submit an online application and processing fee. After receiving highly effective ratings, teachers will be eligible to upgrade from the professional teaching certificate to the advanced teaching certificate, which is good for seven years. Teachers whose certificates were not renewed due to poor performance will need to submit an application and documentation of any retraining and mentoring activities that address their performance.

Reinstatement Option

Teachers who hold expired Rhode Island teaching certificates can apply to have them reinstated. The process includes an online application, along with processing and renewal fees. Teachers must meet all of the current criteria, including Praxis exams, for their area of certification.

Professional Development Units

It should be noted that teachers with certificates expiring on August 31, 2020, will be required to meet professional learning units for certification renewal. This is part of the Rhode Island Department of Education's revised renewal requirements; the current performance evaluation system is scheduled to be phased out. During the year 2020, initial certificates will require 20 professional development units for renewal, scaled up to 90 units by the year 2025.

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