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The Delaware Teaching and Certification Resource

New or experienced teachers looking to start a teaching career in Delaware are required to complete the teaching certification process as stipulated by the Delaware Department of Education (DEEDS). While the process of becoming a certified teacher in Delaware may include distinct requirements for new teachers versus certified teachers from another state, the process is fairly straightforward and is outlined below.

How to Become a Teacher in Delaware

Obtaining Delaware teacher certification requires all state teachers to hold a bachelor’s degree as well as a teaching certificate from an accredited institution. Additionally, Delaware teachers must have passing scores on Praxis I Math, Reading and Writing categories. Delaware also requires a minimum of 91 days of student teaching, but does not specify a subject matter.

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New teachers or teachers with less than three years teaching experience in another state may be eligible for an Initial Teaching License provided they meet the requirements above. Anyone with more than three years experience and a current license from another state may be eligible for a Standard License and might be able to apply for a waiver of the Praxis I testing requirement.

Additionally, there are some specific cases that are considered urgent circumstances which means that the State of Delaware will fast track a new teacher wanting to work in specific “urgent” teaching areas. In this case, new teachers should consult the Delaware Alternative Routes to Certification (ARTC) for specific details on the alternative ways to become certified in Delaware.

Finding Approved Teacher Education Programs in Delaware

To obtain a Delaware teacher certification, applicants must complete a state-approved teacher preparation program. In order to find an approved Delaware teachers certification program, applicants must ensure that the school is accredited by an official teacher accreditation organization.

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On a regional scale, there are six accreditation agencies that accredit teacher education schools. These six organizations are overseen by the US Department of Education although they operate on a regional scale, grouping states accordingly.

Delaware teachers certification programs are offered by institutions that are overseen by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Any school not accredited by the NEASC will not be recognized by the Delaware Department of Education.

In addition, Delaware teachers licensing has its own state wide criteria for accreditation as stipulated by the State Code.

For anyone looking for Delaware teacher certification, it is imperative to study at an accredited institution. When evaluating options, the first step should be to confirm that the school is accredited by the aforementioned organizations. Even when considering an online teaching certification program that may be headquartered in another state, it should be accredited by one of the six regional accreditation agencies.

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Quick Guide

Delaware Teacher Education Requirements

For new teachers, holding a bachelor’s degree and an accredited teaching certificate is required along with passing scores on the Praxis I exam. The four-year program that leads to a bachelor’s degree must be from a regionally accredited institution of higher learning and must meet the standards of the Council of Accreditation of Educator Preparation(CAEP). The curriculum of the program must reflect and focus on the fourteen professional teaching standards established by the state. A few of these standards are knowledge of the content area, understanding the different ways students learn, and the effective management of the classroom. The program must also include a segment of student teaching. Bachelor’s degrees may be earned in elementary education (grades K-6), secondary education in various content areas (grades 7-12), and special education (grades K-12).

For applicants who carry a valid out-of-state certification, teacher reciprocity may be applicable. In most cases, experienced teachers with a current license will be able to receive a Delaware teacher certificate. Additionally, they may be able to waive the Praxis I testing requirement. Applicants who have experience in full-time K-12 teaching outside of Delaware, may need to submit a Verification of Teaching Experience Form, completed by the applicant’s previous teaching location.

Although Delaware reciprocity is more common than other states, it is issued on a case by case basis. If previous teaching experience and teaching credentials are not accepted by the Delaware Department of Education, teachers will be required to submit new Praxis I scores and perhaps the Praxis II. For more details, contact the Delaware Department of Education.

For teachers looking for an advanced teaching license, they must take and pass the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards assessment for national teacher certification.

Delaware Teacher Outlook as of 2012
The Occupational Supply & Demand System has projected 599 annual job openings in Delaware in library and education related fields through 2018. In 2008 and 2007 respectively, the National Center for Education Statistics reported 8,322 public school and 2,440 private school K-12 teachers registered in Delaware. The starting salary for teachers in Delaware is $36,633 and the average salary is $57,934, the 13th highest in the nation according to the National Education Association. Currently, the NEA classifies the Delaware education job market as ‘good’, emphasizing shortages in critical areas for grades 7-12, such as math, science and special education. For more information on education-related wages and working conditions in Delaware, please visit Delaware State Education Association.

Delaware Teacher Testing Requirements

Delaware State SealThe first necessary test to pass in pursuit of a teaching certification in Delaware is the Praxis I, which establishes proficiency in reading, writing and mathematics. It is possible to be exempt from taking this test if satisfactory scores were obtained on other assessments such as the SAT, the GRE or the NTE. For the Standard Certificate, a passing score on the Praxis II Subject Test is required.

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Additional Delaware Teacher Certification Requirements

Delaware state law requires teachers to submit to a state and federal criminal background check and a child protection registry check before being placed in a school. Fingerprinting may be done through your local police office, employing school or district office.

Delaware Teachers Licensing Application Process

  1. Completion of a student teaching program, OR enrollment in an alternative routes pathway to a certification program;
  2. Passing score on Praxis I knowledge assessment tests;
  3. Enrollment in the online Delaware Educator Data System (DEEDS);
  4. Submission of completed application and payment of non-refundable application fees

Delaware Department of Education
Collette Education Resource Center
35 Commerce Way, Suite 1
Dover, DE 19904
ATTN: Certification.

Visit the Delaware Department of Education for more details on Delaware educator certification.

Teacher Quote: “Teaching can be one of the most rewarding and energizing careers. Never lose sight of the kids that drew you to this career. When we forget the human aspect of teaching and get bogged down by the pressures of testing, standards, and curriculum, we are forgetting about the needs of our learners.” -Krista Wallden, Delaware Third Grade Teacher

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Delaware Teacher Salary and Jobs

Type Number Employed Average Annual Salary
Preschool Teachers 2,170 $23,630
Kindergarten Teachers 470 $53,950
Elementary School Teachers 4,780 $57,620
Middle School Teachers 2,060 $54,340
Secondary School Teachers 2,980 $55,610

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2012.

Delaware Teacher Interview

Interview with Krista Wallden, Delaware Third Grade Teacher

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Frequently Asked Questions about Becoming a Teacher in Delaware

Question: How do I become an elementary teacher in Delaware?

Answer: To be an elementary teacher in Delaware, you need to get an initial certificate from the state. To qualify, you must have a bachelor’s degree and complete either a teacher preparation program, an alternative certification program, or 91 days of continuous student teaching in an elementary classroom. You must also take at least 15 credits in teaching courses.

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References:
1. Delaware State Department of Education: https://deeds.doe.k12.de.us/default.aspx
2. US Department of Education: http://www2.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/accreditation_pg6.html
3. Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ak.htm#25-0000

Page edited by Charles Sipe.

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