The Rhode Island Teaching and Certification Resource
How to Become a Teacher in Rhode Island
In order to earn a Rhode Island teacher certification it is necessary to obtain a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher learning. The bachelor’s degree should be within the realm of education desired by the applicant – elementary, secondary, or special education. In addition, the degree program needs to have been completed no more than five years prior to the submission of the application. Upon completion of the degree program, it is necessary to take Rhode Island’s content knowledge exams (PRAXIS), attaining at least the minimum score required for the subject area and/or grade level license being sought. When all of these steps have been completed, the application package may be submitted, with a $50.00 fee, to the Rhode Island Department of Education for approval.
- I want to be a teacher in Rhode Island, 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 Rhode Island’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.
- Global Training and Development - EdS
- E-Learning - EdS
- General Education - Doctor of Education
- Curriculum and Teaching - EdS
- And more...
Rhode Island Teacher Education Requirements
In Rhode Island, there are multiple institutions that offer accredited degree programs for those who wish to become a teacher in Rhode Island. In addition, The New Teacher Project (otherwise known as the Rhode Island Teaching Fellows) in Providence is an accredited program as well. A variety of bachelor’s degrees are available at these institutions, including elementary education (grades 1-6), special education (grades K-8 or grades 7-12), and a variety of subject specialties for middle and high school education (usually grades 7-12). It should be noted that Rhode Island established basic skills entry requirements for those wishing to pursue an education degree.
In January 2012, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Rhode Island’s unemployment rate at 11.7%, significantly higher than the national average of 8.5%. The Occupational Supply and Demand System projects 708 annual job openings in education and library related fields in Rhode Island through 2018. In fall 2008 and 2007 respectively, the Nation Center for Education Statistics listed 11,316 public school and 2,530 private school teachers employed in Rhode Island. The average beginning teaching salary is $38,446 and the average overall teaching salary is 60,923, the 11th highest average among US states according to the National Education Association. The NEA classifies the Rhode Island education job market as tight but notes employment opportunity for special education and foreign language specialists. The National Education Association – Rhode Island has more information regarding state education policy and public education employment opportunity. For specific certification requirements and procedures, please contact local education and teaching schools and degree programs.
Rhode Island Teacher Testing Requirements
In order to submit an application for a teacher’s license in Rhode Island, an applicant must pass the appropriate PRAXIS test or tests administered by ETS. The tests are offered several times a year and may be taken more than once if the first score is not desirable. It should be noted that the Department of Education states that applicants should allow at least twelve weeks from submission of their license application materials until their license is tendered by the state. As the test scores must be included in the application packet, applicants need to pay attention to test dates and deadlines if they are hoping to receive their license by a certain date.
Rhode Island Teacher Salary and Jobs
|Type||Number Employed||Average Annual Salary|
|Elementary School Teachers||3,680||$71,840|
|Middle School Teachers||2,220||$67,590|
|Secondary School Teachers||4,350||$70,430|
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2011.
Frequently Asked Questions about Becoming a Teacher in Rhode Island
Question: What are the requirements to become a high school teacher in Rhode Island?
Answer: To become a high school teacher in Rhode Island, you must be certified through the state. The requirements for certification include having a bachelor’s degree with a major in a teachable subject, and having completed an approved program for teacher education. You must also spend at least 12 weeks student teaching.
Page edited by Charles Sipe.