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Does anyone have any experience with American Board Elementary Teacher Certification Program?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by AgentArt, Oct 17, 2018.

  1. AgentArt

    AgentArt New commenter

    I just searched the forums but can't find any mention of this program - thanks in advance for any advice.
    Long time (10+ years) international IB trained teacher here without teacher certification. Looking for options for certification and wondering about the American Board Elementary Teacher Certification program. It requires you to pass exams at a Pearson VUE testing centre and prove you have a degree/experience/background check. Similar to the PGCEi it will give you certification but not QTS/licence to teach. Obviously it's aimed at American educators (I'm not American) but they are accepting International candidates too. For those of us already in the IB system with loads of experience who are needing certification, is this considered a valid route? I have loads of experience and PYP/DP professional development. Any thoughts on this are appreciated.
     
  2. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    I've never investigated them before, but my Scooby-senses activated immediately reading your description, so I did a quick online search. More prickles on the back of my neck. Boy, they are aggressive in talking about pricing and trying to pull you in.
    Here's the deal. In the US, you get a license from the state, as in the government (Department of Ed) of one of the 50 states. Generally you have to complete a recognized program (which this Board seems to be, for at least some of the states), complete student teaching, pass some tests, and here's the real kicker, be a US citizen. I'm not aware of any state that lets non-US nationals get a teaching certificate. And in US lingo, a teaching certificate is the same as a license.
    It seems to me this Board is playing fast and loose. They want to give the impression that you can earn a recognized qualification from them. In reality, you can't. You could complete their program, and they could say "presto, you're now a teacher", but it might as well be Uncle Ted's Instant License Service, operating out of mom's basement, making that claim. Ok, maybe they're a bit better than Uncle Ted, but it's hard to tell by how much. Their whole pitch is pretty suspicious: it's so easy, it's so cheap, it's so fast, do it in your own time, sign up now! Operators are standing by. It's extra suspicious if you think about what they're not focusing on: what you'll learn, what you'll experience as a "student/client", who is or isn't a suitable candidate, etc.
    International schools generally want teachers to have a recognized qualification. That means different things in different countries. In the UK, we all know what it means. In Germany, it's different. In Qatar, it's different. Some countries require you to complete a specified uni program (whatever that means, usually courses, exams and practice teaching), and that's it. You're done. No other options available or required. Other countries go beyond that and require government licensure, which usually means that uni route, plus government review and approval. So an applicant from the US better have US licensure, not just a uni program.
    Governments also often require that visa applicants have whatever the applicant's home country deems to be a valid qualification. This one wouldn't pass that test.
    This Board is trying to pretend that the US only requires the uni part, but the truth is that the US requires both the uni and the gov't parts.

    The short version: if you applied to my school with this "qualification" listed, I would not be able to consider you. My school and my country require you to have a qualification recognized by your home country.
     
  3. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    To be perfectly fair, your current qualifications would get you a look in plenty of places. Assuming you have a BA which isn't specifically mentioned. Half my schools would have been able to consider your application, and the other half not. Getting something from this Board would not make an impact.
     
  4. AgentArt

    AgentArt New commenter

    Thanks for your response, I do have a BA, and another unrelated fine art diploma.. but no teaching qualification. I'm looking for alternative routes than that offered by Australian universities, where currently you are required to undertake a masters at approximately $25,000. I also need to continue working o/s while studying.
    I also thought that this program sounded too good to be true, but thought I'd find out if anyone had experience. o_O
     

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