Investing in our future is vitally important and strangely difficult. In order to fight oppression from the greedy and power-hungry elite, to better our ways of life with advancing technology, and to increase our country's overall views toward the concept of acceptance, we need education to be a priority. Learn how you can be a spoke in this terribly important wheel. See how Connecticut measures up to the rest of the country by viewing the percentage of state revenue going toward education in each state. (see State Education Spending vs. Overall State Revenue).
According to The Connecticut Economy, New England’s premier journal of local economics, the quality of life in Connecticut has been ranked as the fifth highest in the nation. Contributing to this, in no small part, are Connecticut’s educators and the state’s supportive education system. Connecticut’s education system stands as a shining example of the fact that education can flourish and students can perform well regardless of whether their schools are located in more affluent neighborhoods or in lower-income areas.
The Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN) recently selected 24 public schools in the state, which combined have a 75% student population made up of children and teens from lower-income families. These 24 “Success Story Schools” have shown marked improvement in students’ achievement test scores and in their overall academic performance. This has helped illustrate the fact that a quality education from dedicated educators is the key to academic success, and can even overcome economic disparity in the public school system. Find schools offering teaching certification programs in Connecticut.
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The Connecticut State Department of Education (SDE) (860-713-6543) certifies teachers in a variety of endorsement areas, including Elementary K-6, Middle School (specific to content areas) and Secondary School (specific to content areas). In order to obtain an Initial Educator Certificate in Connecticut, you must satisfy the following educational requirements:
- Complete a bachelor’s degree and take approved courses from regionally accredited institutions specific to the teacher certification you seek (if you choose this route, you must meet certain experience requirements which will be discussed later)
All applicants must complete at least 36 clock hours in special education courses.
Connecticut state-approved educator programs may lead to a bachelor’s degree or a graduate degree. All applicants must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree to meet educational requirements.
If you completed an educator program in another state, you may still be eligible for a Connecticut teaching certificate. Connecticut is part of the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) Interstate Agreement, which is an agreement between more than 30 states. Under this agreement, states must:
- Accept applicants who meet experience requirements (see below)
Candidates from states that are not part of the interstate agreement must meet all Connecticut teacher certification requirements, including coursework, for the certification area they seek.
For an overview of Connecticut examination requirements for aspiring educators, visit the Praxis website.
Basic skills testing:
All applicants for a Connecticut Initial Educator Certificate must receive passing scores on the Praxis I Basic Competency examinations
. This includes the following sections with the corresponding passing scores:
- Praxis I: Reading (172)
- Praxis I: Writing (171)
- Praxis I: Mathematics (171)
If you have already taken one of the following examinations and received the corresponding scores, you may be eligible for a Praxis I waiver:
Content area assessment testing:
- Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT):
- Before April 1, 1995: Total score of 1000 (math and verbal subtest scores must be at least 400 each)
- After March 31, 1995: Total score of 1100
- American College Testing (ACT):
- Before October 1, 1989: Score of at least 20 on English subtest and 17 on Mathematics
- After September 30, 1989: Score of at least 22 on English subtest and 19 on Mathematics
- Prueba de Aptitud Academica (PAA):
- Total score equivalent to at least a 1100 SAT score (math and verbal subtest scores must be at least 400 each)
- Score of at least 510 on the English as a Second Language Test (ESLAT) or on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
- Graduate Record Exam (GRE):
- Before October 1, 2002: Combined score of at least 1000 (quantitative reasoning score must be at least 500 and verbal reasoning score must be at least 450)
- On or after October 1, 2002: Combined score of at least 1000 (quantitative reasoning score must be at least 500; verbal reasoning score must be at least 450; and analytic writing score must be at least 4.5)
You must take one or more specialized content examination specific to the area in which you wish to become certified.
- If you wish to become certified in Elementary Education Grades K-6 or Integrated Early Childhood/NK-3, you must pass the Connecticut Foundations of Reading Test with a score of 240 (along with the Praxis II exam requirements below)
- If you wish to teach any world language (such as French, German or Spanish) you must pass both parts of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) exam with a score of Intermediate High on each part
- For the following areas of certification, you must pass the corresponding Praxis II exam:
- Art PK-12
- Biology 7-12
- Business Education 7-12
- Chemistry 7-12
- Earth Science 7-12
- Integrated Early Childhood/Special Education N-K
- Elementary 1-3
- Elementary K-6
- English 7-12
- General Science 7-12
- Health Education PK-12
- Home Economics PK-12
- Mathematics 7-12
- English Middle School 4-8
- Mathematics Middle School 4-8
- Biology Middle School 4-8
- Chemistry Middle School 4-8
- Physics Middle School 4-8
- Earth Science Middle School 4-8
- General Science Middle School 4-8
- Integrated Science Middle School 4-8
- History/Social Studies Middle School 4-8
- Music PK-12
- Physical Education PK-12
- Physics 7-12
- History/Social Studies 7-12
- Comprehensive Special Education K-12
- Technology Education PK-12
If you hold a valid teaching certificate from another state with requirements that are equivalent to Connecticut’s and have either three years of teaching experience in the past 10 years OR a Master’s degree in the area in which you seek certification, you may be exempt from Praxis II testing requirements.
If you have not completed a Connecticut-approved educator preparation program, you may still be eligible for certification if you meet certain requirements. These include completing required course work and having 20 months of teaching experience in the subject area in which you seek certification. This experience must have occured in a public school in another state under a valid teaching certificate, or in an in-state or out-of-state approved nonpublic school. Substitute teaching experience does not count toward this requirement. If you choose this pathway, you must have a supervisor complete the Statement of Professional Experience and submit it with your certification application.
As a traditional applicant for an Initial Educator Certificate in Connecticut, you must complete the student teaching requirements of your Connecticut educator preparation program. This internship will occur in a classroom setting corresponding to the grade level and/or subject area in which you wish to become certified. You will be assigned a mentor teacher who will offer advice and supervise your classroom performance. Depending upon your educator preparation program, the length of your field placement may vary from a few weeks to a year.
Under Connecticut certification regulations, you are exempt from the student teaching portion of the educator preparation program if you meet certain qualifications. You must possess at least 10 months of teaching experience within 10 years of applying for entry into a teacher preparation program at the grade/subject area in which you seek certification. This experience must occur in an approved public school in another state or in an approved nonpublic school in Connecticut or in another state. Substitute teaching experience does not fulfill this requirement.
Under the NASDTEC, Connecticut will accept you as an applicant if you have a Level II educator certificate in another NASDTEC member state and have at least 27 months of full-time teaching experience in the subject area in which you seek to become certified in Connecticut. This experience must occur within seven years of applying for Connecticut certification, and you must still hold a valid teaching certificate from a NASDTEC member state.
Document and Application Requirements
Once you have satisfied the educational, examination and experience requirements for teacher certification in Connecticut, you may apply for certification. Use Form ED-170, General Application for Certificate
. The completed application, along with the following supporting documents, should be mailed to the Connecticut State Department of Education, Bureau of Educator Standards and Certification, P.O. Box 150471 – Room 243, Hartford, CT 06115-0471:
If you completed college coursework in a foreign country, your credentials must be evaluated by an approved foreign credential evaluation agency. Review Foreign Credentials for Connecticut Certification prior to applying for Connecticut teacher certification.
Criminal History Background Check
All school employees in Connecticut must undergo a criminal history record check, including fingerprinting. This includes those who are placed into student teaching settings and clinical field experiences. This process is usually not started until you are assigned to a field placement at a Connecticut school district, or within the first 30 days of your employment. The school district that employs you will give you the necessary forms and direct you to the nearest fingerprinting location. A list of Connecticut fingerprinting services may be found here.
The State Police Bureau of Identification and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) will check your fingerprints. The results of your criminal history background check will be reported directly to the school district that employs you. You must submit to additional criminal background checks every three years for as long as you work for a Connecticut school district.
If you have questions about educator preparation programs in Connecticut, contact the Certification Officer at the appropriate college or university.
For answers to general questions about Connecticut educator certification, contact Certification Representatives at (860) 713-6969 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the Connecticut State Department of Education website.
State estimations based on analysis by Richard Ingersoll, Professor of Education and Sociology, University of Pennsylvania, from the National Center for Education Statistics Student and Staffing Survey, and therefore include a slight margin of error.