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The Idaho Teaching and Certification Resource

For aspiring teachers in the state, there are quite a few ways to obtain Idaho teacher certification. First and foremost, all Idaho teachers must be certified by an accredited teaching institution. Additionally, there are a few more requirements that may depend on experience, education and testing scores. The certification requirements and process are overseen by the Idaho Department of Education. Below, we outline the various pathways to becoming a certified teacher in Idaho.

How to Become a Teacher in Idaho

As with all US states, Idaho teachers are required to hold a bachelor’s degree. In order to be eligible to teach in Idaho applicants must also complete a Idaho teachers certification program that meets both the Idaho State Board of Education standards as well as the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

New teachers who have completed an Idaho educator certificate at an accredited school will be eligible for the Initial Certificate, which is a renewable certificate and valid for five years.

Applicants who have an out-of-state certification may be eligible, under reciprocity terms, for an Interim Certificate, which is valid for three years. In order to renew the certification into an Initial Certificate, these teachers are also required to pass an Idaho Comprehensive Literacy Course. For other questions about Idaho teacher certification renewal policies, it’s best to contact Idaho’s Department of Education

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Finding Approved Teacher Education Programs in Idaho

The most important step towards certification is finding an accredited Idaho educator certification institution. This step is imperative for anyone wanting to work as a teacher in Idaho teacher because without a certification from an accredited school, Idaho won’t issue a license to teach in the state.

When looking for approved Idaho teachers certification program, applicants must confirm that the chosen school is in good standing with the appropriate regional accreditation agency. There are six regional accreditation agencies, which are overseen by the US Department of Education.

For Idaho, the accreditation body is the Northwest Accreditation Commission (NWAC). Teaching applicants should look for this accreditation when choosing a program in the state.

Historically, there have been two national accreditation organizations (NCATE and TEAC) that states looked to for quality assurance in teacher education institutions. Recently, those two organizations have been consolidated into one agency now called the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). Recognized by the US Department of Education, this organization is considered to be a very distinguished standard of teaching excellence in the educational field. This accreditation is also imperative for teachers looking for approved teaching courses.

For anyone looking for Idaho teacher certification, all certifications must be recognized and approved by the Idaho State Board of Education. All online teaching certification programs, even ones that are headquartered out of state (for example, University of Phoenix in Arizona), must be certified under one of the six accreditation agencies. If this is not the case, applicants will not be eligible for an Idaho teacher certificate.

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Idaho Teacher Education Requirements

All Idaho teachers (Kindergarten through grade twelve) are required to demonstrate competency in comprehensive literacy and will be assessed on their abilities to teach. In general, the assessments look for: phonological awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, writing, technology, and classroom management and intervention strategies. The assessments are based on current research and best practices in coordination with International Reading Association/National Council of Teachers of English standards, National English Language Learner’s Association professional teaching standards, National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education standards, and state accreditation standards.

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Idaho Teacher Outlook as of 2012
The Occupational Supply & Demand System projects 1,256 new job opportunities annually in education and library related fields in Idaho through 2018. The National Center for Education Statistics lists 15,148 public school and 1,680 private school teachers working in Idaho in fall 2008 and 2007 respectively. The average beginning teacher’s salary in Idaho is $31,581 and the average overall teacher’s salary is $47,416, the 37th highest in the nation according to the National Education Association. The NEA notes shortages in math, science, special education and music and art teachers throughout the state. Recent proposed reductions in teacher salaries have been contested by the Idaho Education Association, the largest active teachers union in Idaho. Please visit the website or contact education and teaching schools in Idaho for more information.

Idaho Teacher Testing Requirements

Idaho State SealBefore applying for Idaho Teachers Licensing, it is necessary to successfully pass the applicable Praxis II assessment(s). Most subject/grade areas require two tests. Some of these tests can be taken on a computer at a designated center while some are paper tests. Test centers and testing dates are also accessible from this site. It is also important to note that it is possible to retake Praxis assessments in an effort to improve an undesirable score.

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Additional Idaho Teacher Certification Requirements

All Idaho public education employees are required to submit a background check before employment consideration. Applicants can have their fingerprints rolled at the local police office. The completed fingerprint card, along with the $40 fee, should be turned in at the time of the Idaho teacher application packet submission.

Idaho Teachers Licensing Application Process

  1. Submission of an application package with all required documents must be submitted to the state.
  2. Submission of proof of completed teacher preparation program that meets both the Idaho State Board of Education standards as well as the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
  3. Submission a completed fingerprint card (along with the $40 fee) for a background check.
  4. Verification of successful completion of the Praxis II assessment.
  5. Payment of non-refundable application fee of $75 payable to the state.

State Department of Education
Teacher Certification
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, Idaho 83720-0027

Visit the Idaho State Department of Education for further details on Idaho teacher certification.

Idaho Teacher Salary and Jobs

Type Number Employed Average Annual Salary
Preschool Teachers 900 $27,730
Kindergarten Teachers 460 $41,650
Elementary School Teachers 6,900 $48,130
Secondary School Teachers 4,210 $45,540

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

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Frequently Asked Questions about Becoming a Teacher in Idaho

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

Answer: To be an elementary teacher in Idaho, you must get the standard elementary certificate from the state. You must have a bachelor’s degree and 24 credit hours in elementary education courses from an accredited institution. You must also complete six credit hours of student teaching in elementary classrooms.

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References:
1. Idaho State Department of Education: https://www.sde.idaho.gov/site/teacher_certification/
2. Idaho State Board of Education: http://www.boardofed.idaho.gov/
3. US Department of Education: http://www2.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/accreditation_pg6.html
4. Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ak.htm#25-0000

Page edited by Charles Sipe.

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