The Maine Teaching and Certification Resource
Anyone wanting to teach in Maine must be certified by the state’s Department of Education Certification. Although specific requirements may vary depending on education and experience, the standard traditional path to Maine teacher certification is fairly straightforward and is outlined in detail on this page.
How to Become a Teacher in Maine
Individuals who are considering becoming a certified teacher in Maine have several options available for earning a Maine teacher certification. Although there are some alternative ways to become a teacher in Maine, all teachers are required to hold at least a bachelor’s degree, complete a Maine teachers certification program at an accredited school and pass the required Praxis Pre-Professional Skills Test.
For teachers who already hold an out-of-state teacher certification, reciprocity in Maine may be possible under certain circumstances. Maine is a participating member in the Interstate Agreement on Qualifications of Education Personnel. This is an interstate agreement ran by the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC), which oversees reciprocity between K-12 educators in participating states. For more information on Maine reciprocity, contact the state’s Department of Education.
- Early Childhood Education
Finding Approved Teacher Education Programs in Maine
Perhaps the most important step to obtaining a Maine teacher certification is completing a teacher education program at an accredited school. The Maine DOE approves schools that have been accredited by one of the six regional accreditation agencies, which are overseen by the US Department of Education. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) is responsible for the accreditation of Maine schools and universities. Therefore, the state looks for this accreditation when approving schools for the Maine teacher certification process.
Anyone evaluation teacher education programs should confirm that their school of choice is in good standing with the NEASC. For those considering an online teaching certification program, the school providing the program should be certified by one of the six regional agencies, even if it is headquartered out of state. Whether campus based or online, any school offering a teacher preparation program should absolutely be accredited by the NEASC. If an aspiring teacher attends a school which is not accredited by the NEASC, he or she will not be eligible to teach in Maine.
Additionally, there is a national accreditation organization, which also accredits schools around the US. The Council of Accreditation of Educator Preparedness (CAEP) is a new organization that consists of two recently-consolidated accreditation bodies, the NCATE and TEAC. Although the name is new, the organization has a long history of accreditation experience. Therefore, a CAEP accreditation is a highly respected sign of meeting rigorous standards in terms of curriculum, process and organization within the education preparatory sector. A CAEP accreditation may not be required of schools (yet), but most teaching institutes solicit the accreditation because of the prestige it holds.
See our list of CAEP accredited schools in Maine.
- I want to be a teacher in Maine, but don’t have a degree: Earn an Education Degree
- I want to be a teacher and have a degree, but not in education: Learn about Maine’s Alternative Certification Process and Programs
- I have a teaching degree and am interested in more education: Learn about Master’s Degree Education Programs or Doctorate Education Programs and Information.
Maine Teacher Education Requirements
In order to acquire a Maine teachers licensing through the traditional route, candidates must provide proof that they have at least a bachelor’s degree and have completed a state-approved o Maine teachers certification program. Those candidates seeking certification via alternative approaches must also complete a preparatory program to ensure that they have the skills and experience to be effective classroom teachers for the students in Maine public schools.
The Occupational Supply and Demand System projects at least 858 annual job openings in Maine in education and library related fields through 2018. In fall 2008 and 2007, the National Center for Education Statistics reported 15,913 public school and 2,140 private school teachers employed in Maine. According to the National Education Association, the average starting teacher salary in Maine is $30,732 and the average overall classroom teacher salary is $47,182, the 36th highest state average and below the national average of $55,623. The NEA also reports a shortage in foreign language, math, science and special education teachers throughout the state. The relatively few projected annual openings in the state of Maine reflect the state’s small population and may increase as older teachers begin to retire and the public school systems supplements their positions with young, newly certified teachers. Specialization in math, science or foreign language subjects from grades 7-12 should greatly increase job prospects throughout the state and especially in more rural areas. Visit the Maine Education Association for more information regarding education policy, legislation and job opportunities or request information on certification from Maine education and teacher training schools.
Maine Teacher Testing Requirements
Anyone pursing a teaching certification in Maine must demonstrate their abilities in the fundamentals of reading, writing, and mathematics by passing the Praxis Pre-Professional Skills Test, commonly referred to as the PPST or the Praxis I. Teachers must also demonstrate their knowledge of grade-level content in the subject they wish to teach by submitting a passing score on the appropriate Praxis II test. Higher levels of certification require that experienced teachers demonstrate their understanding of educational pedagogy by passing the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT) assessment.
Additional Maine Teacher Certification Requirements
Like most states, Maine DOE requires that all teaching applicants submit to a criminal history record check. Before applicants send in their teaching application, fingerprints must be taken and issued through Maine’s approved online system, IdentoGO.
Maine Teachers Licensing Application Process
Once applicants have completed all of the steps towards Maine teacher certification outlined above, the application packet must be sent in to the Department of Education’s Certification Office.
- Submission of all official transcripts
- Verification of completion of Main educator certification program at an accredited school
- Confirmation of passing Praxis exam scores
- Completion and submission of the application
- Payment of non-refundable processing fees
Department of Education
23 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333-0023
Visit the Maine Department of Education for further details on teaching certification in Maine.
Maine Teacher Salary and Jobs
|Type||Number Employed||Average Annual Salary|
|Elementary School Teachers||6,910||$47,870|
|Middle School Teachers||2,850||$48,380|
|Secondary School Teachers||5,330||$48,530|
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2012.
Frequently Asked Questions about Becoming a Teacher in Maine
Question: How do I become an elementary teacher in Maine?
Answer: To become an elementary teacher in Maine, you must be certified through the state. Certification requires a bachelor’s degree and a teacher preparation program. You must also complete a student teaching assignment in an elementary school and pass the Praxis I and II tests.
Teaching and Education Programs
- Master of Arts in Education/Curriculum and Instruction
- M.A. in Education/Secondary Teacher Education
- M.A. in Education/Early Childhood Ed.
- B.S. in Education / Elementary Education
- And more...
- MS in Education (for Existing Teachers Grades K-12)
- MA in Teaching (for Aspiring Teachers Grades 5-12)
- M.Ed. Teaching & Learning: History
- AA in Education (Non-Licensure)
- CERT: Preschool
- MA Teaching: Middle Grades
- And more...
- Bachelor of Science: Early Childhood Development
- Associate of Applied Science: Early Childhood Development
- Bachelor of Science: Advanced Start in Early Childhood Development
- Doctor of Management - Graduate Level Instructional Practices
- Doctor of Management - Private Sector Higher Education Leadership
1. Maine State Department of Education: http://www.maine.gov/doe/
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.