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teachers I'm ready to join your ranks. What do I do?(19 posts)

teachers I'm ready to join your ranks. What do I do?ishmael
Dec 17, 2002 3:16 PM
I've been smoothering the board with my work related questions, this is the big one that will decide my career. I want to teach. I'll teach anyone, anything, anywhere. I'm about to graduate with a history degree from Temple but my GPA is a measily 2.3ish right now(i plan to get it up to 2.5 by the end.) 2.5 was adequate to get certification a year or so ago in Pa., but I didn't realize that now it's 2.8 and it's going to be 3.0 by next year when I'm ready. What can I do? I've looked into teach for america(I'll have to wait another year). Other than that I havent found out any other options, what do you know?
re: teachers I'm ready to join your ranks. What do I do?jtolleson
Dec 17, 2002 3:39 PM
Small districts where they have teacher shortages often have provision licensure programs where they take you on while you obtain licensure. You'd need to be willing to move though. Specially good chances if you speak a foreign language well.
i looked at thatishmael
Dec 17, 2002 4:01 PM
I've looked into emergency certification. I'd have to be in the process of obtaining my license, and to get excepted into the school I need the higer GPA
Anywhere - anything - hmmmm....jose_Tex_mex
Dec 17, 2002 4:53 PM
Ishmael,
If you are thinking about teaching in the NY or NJ area I could be of great help to you. However, a word of caution.

There are possiblities such as Emergency and Alternate routes. Check out ets.org as you will have to take a Praxis exam eventually to teach.

If you really, really wanted to teach and could brave the inner city schools I am sure you could get hired. However, you might be better off going in to corrections than some schools.

What is truly depressing is the lack of abilities our kids have. It is one thing to have problems understanding. However, it is another to refuse to work - which is what I come across regularly.

Anyhow, if you have any questions - fire away!
great!!ishmael
Dec 17, 2002 6:50 PM
thanks for your help...I'm really excited to teach but lately have been bummed about the GPA requirement change. I'll have about a 2.5 when I graduate which really limits me it seems. As I understand it I still need the higher GPA to teach with the emergency certification because I have to be getting fully accreditited in the meantime Is'nt that true? anyway, I'd be more than willing to work in the ghetto for awhile with the hope that I could get certified to teach in a non-ghetto one day. I teach ghetto kids already and from what I've seen and experienced, they get along with me while not along with most others. They dont piss me off like they do the other teachers, to be honest they amuse me, I seem to get along with ghetto kids, I think they like me...I'm not big on classroom order...so how can I teach? I want to get moving as soon as I graduate, what kind of GPA will I need and what else do I have to do?
great!!zeke
Dec 17, 2002 8:42 PM
You belong in the classroom!!! I certainly wish there were more teachers with that attitude. I know of 2 who became famous scholars in the field of Education: R. McDermott at Stanford, and C. Cazden, now retired I think, at Harvard.
Are you nuts?53T
Dec 18, 2002 11:36 AM
The latest federal education reform program (NCLB) specifically says that each child will be taught by highly qualified teachers. That means they have to pass at least two tests, communications and general knowledge. Ish will have to brush up on grammar to pass the comm. test. As far as general knowledge, why the hell is your GPA so low?

Yes teachers are short, but more and more schools will be looking to qualified pools of talent to get new teachers (private industry). Students with bad writing skills, low GPAs, and street credibility are going to have to look elsewhere.
thats incouraging I thinkishmael
Dec 18, 2002 3:01 PM
according to what your saying, I have to pass two tests to qualify. Are you calling my past college career a "test" or is there another general knowledge test I would have to take in the future. I look it up. As far as why my GPA is so low, I'm a person who doesnt do much without a goal in sight. Now that my goal is in sight I regret my past performance. But don't we all regret lots of things.
Are you just trolling?53T
Dec 18, 2002 5:47 PM
Nobody but Nobody says "incouraging" when discussing that he wants to teach English, or teach IN English.

Your college career may have been a trial, but its not one of the tests. By the way you will need a degree in a relevant field to teach at the secondary level in Mass. No more Liberal Arts majors teaching math.
so what do I needishmael
Dec 18, 2002 6:02 PM
if I have a 2.5 GPA history ba what more do I need? what tests? tell me everything you know.
What you need53T
Dec 19, 2002 6:44 AM
First and foremost, take every opportunity to present yourself as a person who has a strong command of the English language. This includes every word you type, write, or speak. Eventually every thought you have will be a complete sentence and your consciousness will be divided into paragraphs, with proper punctuation.

Secondly, understand that your state regulates teaching. Go to your state's Department of Education web site. There will likely be a section on becoming a teacher. The information there is accurate and more complete than any other source.
great!!jose_Tex_mex
Dec 18, 2002 4:30 AM
I will have to check the GPA requirements. However, I would recommend you get your substitue certificate first. Then have a look at a few schools and see if you can land a long term substitute position - check njhire.com - a good place to start in the North East.

Have you done the math to see what an extra year of easy classes would do for your GPA? Would it be cost effective to take an extra 30 credits of easy classes to get the GPA up?
I'm working with the ets.org siteishmael
Dec 18, 2002 9:15 AM
and they've directed me to the state. And the state ed phone number is busy, so I'm on hold. But it SEEMS that maybe a higher GPA isn't required if I do the test. Thanks so much. I dont thank people often, this is such a relief. I've talked to my school and other places and haven't found much.
how does alternative or emergency cert workishmael
Dec 18, 2002 9:45 AM
I've looked at the ets.org site and I've also talked to people there. Next I was directed to the state and their phone is always busy. Is it possible to get a history degree with a 2.5 and then become a teacher by using either- emergency, alternative, or the test I read about at the ets.org site? Or will I have to get my gradepoint up?
how does alternative or emergency cert workjose_Tex_mex
Dec 18, 2002 10:06 AM
You're very welcome...

First of all, if you dialed the number I think you did, you will probably never get through, unless you can wait all day. From what I understand, there is only one number for the entire state - the busy signal tells you only one person at a time.

I honestly do not remember what the req's are so I will have to check. There are three ways to be a teacher, that I know of. One: go to a teaching school and do a year of student teaching along with lots of courses pertinent to the field. Two: have a degree in a field, take and pass the Praxis, find a school willing to accept you and "go the alternate route." That is, teach in the day and go to night school to pick up a few credits - 15 throughout the year. Third: the vocational route. If you were in the Comp Sci industry for a few years (3 or more) you can get a vocational license but still have to do the alternate route.

As for emergency route, I would have to check. I believe it depends on the county - which is where a lot of the paperwork goes.

Even if you could get a sub position and then go back to school and take 20 credits of Math, you would (I believe) be able to teach Math. Finding a long term Sub position might be the best idea at this point.

Hope this helps...
re: teachers I'm ready to join your ranks. What do I do?zeke
Dec 17, 2002 8:39 PM
You could certainly teach english in Japan. It seems that you are about to complete a BA? Then you could easily fit into the JET program. The minimum requirement is a BA in any subject and being a native speaker of English. Search the net for information. It is there, the salary is good and most Jets seem to be happy with the social life. With teaching well.... it depends on who you teach with. The classes are not under your control, but you work with Jr. High or Senior High school teachers who use you as they wish their classes. But there is plenty of free time to find additional work and make connections etc etc.

Another related option is teaching in Alaska. Specifically I am thinking of Barrow Alaska, located at or near the ARrctic circle. I was there last summer and they were looking for teachers. The salary is high as is the turnover rate because , they say of the environmental conditions. But the teachers I have met were dedicated and of high quality.

BTW, you may be wondering. I am not a teacher but was and will soon be again a teacher of teachers, ie in the field of educational research.
English teachingLO McDuff
Dec 18, 2002 6:58 AM
Ish,
I e-mailed my aunt. She is a recently-retired HS english teacher from Ridley (in Delco). Forgetting the GPA issues for the moment, there is an over abundance of applicants for any non-technical teaching positions in the suburbs. There are limited openings in places like Philly and, to a lesser extent, Chester. The market for teachers is a definite buyers market.

Not a pretty picture.

She said you might want to check into the Philly Parochial schools. In addition, my sister-in-law went into the New York State's program that sent new teachers into inner-city schools. After 1.5 years, she is already counting the days. (The kids are great, the parents have been the biggest challenge!!)

Good luck.
thank you for all your helpishmael
Dec 18, 2002 9:00 AM
I'll check that website, parochial schools, see what my GPA can do after another year(maybe I'll double major, should I do education? sounds boring),...I'll read over your messages and see what I can do.
re: teachers I'm ready to join your ranks. What do I do?bigskulls
Dec 18, 2002 12:50 PM
Great idea. First off, don't let anyone tell you it won't happen. It certainly will - there are millions of schools all around the U.S. that are looking for enthusiastic teachers, regardless of GPA. Stop worrying about the state requirements for now, and try to start talking to some schools in areas that you want to live.

My wife just became a NYC public school teacher, with no Masters degree, and I'd be willing to bet alot that her GPA was no higher than yours. In New York, school principals have almost complete freedom to hire anyone they want, provided you can fulfill the qualifications in a reasonable amount of time: my wife has 5 years to get her masters. It's a little more complicated than that, but essentially the school has a large amount of leeway to hire whoever they want.

If all this looks like a huge pain - and it will be - think about private schools. No certification required. If they like you, you're in, but the pay isn't great.

Lastly, I know more school is probably the last thing on your list, but if you started taking classes toward your MEd, you would start meeting other teachers in the area who can give you a lot of first hand advice on how to get hired. You could do it while working another job in the meantime. Plus, when you do get your job, you'll be that much further along.

Don't get hung up on requirements and other stuff. Remember, the school system is held together with tape and glue, and they need anyone good they can find.

You should also have an idea of what and who you want to teach. Don't tell them "I'll teach anyone anything." If your major was history, you'll have a hard time selling yourself as a high school science teacher. High school, Jr. high and elementary schools all have their advantages and disadvantages. Teachers in the lower grades are predominantly women: not that that's good or bad, it's just the way it is.

NYC has (or at least had) a program that let's teachers start after a summer of training, and they help you get your masters (and help pay for it.) Not every school there is a hell hole by any means, the school where my wife teachs in Brooklyn (PS107) is as nice as you'll find anywhere. Plus, starting pay is now mid to high 30s, and you won't make that as an intern/store clerk/gofer.