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Steps to Becoming a Spanish Teacher in NJ

Find out what is required to become a certified Spanish teacher in New Jersey. Get an overview of the education, training, and examination requirements as well as the application process.

Info for New Jersey Spanish Teachers

The state of New Jersey requires certification for all kindergarten, elementary, secondary, and post-secondary Spanish teachers. There are three certification levels available depending on the candidate's educational and professional background. The table below is an overview of the requirements and salary expectations for all certified teachers in New Jersey.

Education Bachelor's degree required
Exam Requirements Praxis II, Oral Proficiency, Basic Skills
Certification Certificate of Eligibility (CE) , Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing (CEAS), or Standard Certificate (SC)
Median Salary for Teachers in New Jersey (2018)* Kindergarten: $67,400
Elementary: $70,660
High School: $76,390
Post-secondary: $92,110 (Foreign Language and Literature)
National Career Outlook (2016-2026) Kindergarten: 8% growth
Elementary: 7% growth
High School: 8% growth
Post-secondary: 12% growth (Foreign Language and Literature)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Complete the Education Requirements

To begin the process of certification, you must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. It is important to design your study plan with the Spanish certification in mind, as applicants are required to have at least 30 credits in the subject of Spanish. These courses must appear on your college transcript, and can include topics in both Spanish language and culture. A cumulative 3.0 grade point average also applies.

Step 2: Determine the Appropriate Certification Level

Once you have completed your education requirements, you must determine your certification level. New Jersey has three certifications available with different eligibility requirements. The Certificate of Eligibility (CE) and Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing (CEAS) are both for those without prior teaching experience. The CE is for those who meet all basic requirements but have not completed a formal teacher preparation program. The CEAS is exclusively for those with formal teacher preparation.

Both certificates allow candidates to seek employment in a New Jersey public school, where they must go through the Provisional Teacher Process (PTP). While in PTP, they receive evaluation and membership from district staff. For those who have completed the PTP process and have at least two years of teaching experience, the lifetime Standard Certification (SC) is available.

Step 3: Take the Required Examinations

The examination requirements are similar for CE and CEAS candidates. As a fist step, both levels require the completion of the Praxis II test, which is administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). The second examination requirement involves a Spanish oral proficiency interview.

In addition to the prior two examination requirements, CE candidates are also required to pass the basic skills assessment, which may involve an additional test of basic skills approved by the New Jersey commissioner. However, those who scored in the top one third percentile on either the SAT, ACT or GRE standardized tests can skip this requirement (but must have the appropriate testing service send a score report directly to the NJ Department of Education in order to qualify). While CEAS candidates do not have to complete the basic skills assessment, additional examinations and requirements may apply depending on their graduation date and educational history.

Step 4: Complete the Online Application and Mail Your Application Documents

Once you have completed all applicable education and examination requirements, you may begin the application process online on the NJ Department of Education website. The website will instruct you on the required steps, charging you fees and providing you with a unique tracking number. There you will find a list of documents to mail directly to their office. It is important to ensure that you include all documents in one single packet clearly labeled with your tracking number (so they can be quickly matched to your file). In regards to examination scores, you must instruct all testing services to send your scores directly to the NJ Department of Education.

Step 5: Double Check That You Have Met the Physiology and Hygiene Requirement

The physiology and hygiene requirement can be waived with proof of military training or the completion of any college course in a relevant subject (including biology, nutrition, or health). Should you not meet either two waiver requirements, you can complete a brief 35 question test in your education county office. You can only register to complete this test after you have successfully submitted your online application.