Missouri State Teacher Certification

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1 1. What classifications of Missouri state teaching certificates are currently issued in Missouri? As of August, 2003, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) issues two levels of teaching certificates: The Initial Professional Certificate (IPC) and the Career Continuous Professional Certificate (CCPC). 2. What are the requirements to obtain each certificate? (1) Successful completion of a bachelor's degree and a teacher education program at a college/university approved by the state education agency in Missouri or another state (2) A grade point average of at least 2.5 overall and in the certification area (3) A passing score on the Praxis test(s) designated for the certification area (4) Endorsement of the teacher certification officer at the college/university on the Application for a Missouri Teacher's Certificate form (5) Completion of a background check packet requested through the DESE web site and payment of the background check fee. Completion of the following while holding an IPC certificate: (1) Four years of approved teaching experience (2) Participation in a mentoring program for two years (3) Successful completion of 30 contact hours of professional development (4) Participation in a beginning teacher assistance program provided by a Missouri college/university (5) Successful participation in a performance-based teacher evaluation process (6) Development and implementation of a professional development plan (7) Payment of the required fee. 3. What is "approved teaching experience"? Employment as a teacher while: A. Under contract for at least half-time B. Serving as the teacher of record (i.e., not a substitute, teacher aide, etc.) C. Teaching in a non-public school that is accredited by an accrediting association approved by DESE or public school approved by DESE or its equivalent in another state. (The accrediting associations used by the Archdiocese of St. Louis are approved by DESE.) 4. How does a teacher who holds an IPC obtain a mentor? The principal of the school at which the beginning teacher is employed assigns a mentor. 5. What topics must professional development activities address? Topics that pertain to education and/or to curriculum content appropriate to the teacher's certification and position. For the purpose of being certified as a teacher by the State of Missouri, activities focused on Catholic belief and practice, spiritual development, etc. cannot be counted. 6. What activities may be counted for professional development contact hours? A. College/university courses from accredited institutions B. Activities provided by a professional association or a school that involve receiving instruction from qualified presenters / facilitators C. Participation in school-sponsored, guided, and structured professional learning teams, study groups, peer coaching, lesson study, student work analysis, and other activities that utilize best practice delivery systems for professional development. 7. How are contact hours calculated? A. For college/university courses, one semester hour of credit = 15 contact hours. B. For other professional development activities, one clock hour = 1 contact hour. Note: Only the time of actual learning activities can be counted; registration times, meal times, breaks, etc., cannot be counted. 8. What type of documentation must teachers have for professional development contact hours? A. The documentation must be have been prepared by and provided to the teacher by the institution or professional organization that sponsored the activity and should bear its logo, seal, an authorized signature or other identifying mark. [This includes the elementary and secondary school if the school provided the professional development activity.] A form to assist with keeping track of professional development activities is attached to this packet.

2 B. The documentation must state: (1) the educator s name (2) the topic of the activity (3) the date(s) of the activity (4) the number of contact hours (or credit hours) for the activity 9. What is a Beginning Teacher Assistance Conference (BTAC)? A BTAC is a workshop that specifically addresses issues beginning teachers often encounter. The conference addresses the beginning teacher needs of elementary, middle, and high school teachers. Registration is conducted by the Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals. Go to the MASSP web site ( Click on Programs, then on Beginning Teachers, then on Printable registration form or on Register online. The fee of $69.70 for the BTAC is paid either by the individual teacher or by his/her school if the school has established a policy of doing so. For 2015, the St Louis area BTACs will be held at Lindenwood University. Beginning teachers may attend on either October 23 or October If a teacher has taught for a number of years before becoming state certified, does he/she still need to attend a Beginning Teacher Assistance Conference (BTAC)? Yes. A BTAC must be attended during the effective dates of the IPC certificate. 11. What is a "performance-based teacher evaluation"? A performance-based evaluation process focuses on teachers' behaviors and skills rather than on attributes such as personal traits, credentials earned, etc. The Archdiocesan Educator Evaluation Process is a performance-based teacher evaluation process. 12. What does "successful completion" of a performance-based teacher evaluation process mean? "Successful completion" means that the teacher was given a satisfactory evaluation. In the Archdiocesan Educator Evaluation Process, "satisfactory completion" means that the teacher is not on intervention. 13. What is a "professional development plan"? A professional development plan is a written plan that describes the specific activities that the teacher will engage in to achieve a professional goal and the specific data that will be collected to demonstrate accomplishment of the goal. The goal setting component and the information planning component included in the Archdiocesan Educator Evaluation Process constitute a professional development plan. 14. What must teachers do to ensure that their teaching certificates do not expire or become inactivated? (1) Fulfill the requirements to upgrade to the CCPC level during the four years the IPC is valid. Apply for a CCPC using the DESE online application system (see Question #15 below.) In Step 3, choose Upgrade Professional. (1) Successfully complete at least 15 contact hours of professional development during each school year (2) Continue to successfully complete the Archdiocesan Educator Evaluation Process in order to fulfill the certification requirements to (a) develop and implement professional development plans and (b) successfully complete a performance-based teacher evaluation process. 15. What is the DESE Online Educator Certification System, and how does it work? All educator certification functions are now processed online. To access the DESE Online Certification System, go to (or go to and click on Educators and then on Web Applications. (1) Either click on Register to create a User Name and Password, or on Login if you already have an User Name/Password. (2) Click on Educator Certification System (3) Click on New Applications for certificate extensions, certificate upgrades, and certificate reactivations, applying for a Missouri certificate if certified in another state, and applying for an additional certification area. (4) Note: Use the district code for the Archdiocese of St Louis, not for the particular Catholic school at

3 16. How and when is fulfillment of the requirements to keep the certificate valid reported to DESE? Fulfillment of the requirements is reported by the employer using the DESE online reporting system. Fulfillment of the requirements is reported by the employer using the DESE online reporting system. 17. How will DESE ensure that teachers did engage in the professional development activities reported? DESE will utilize an auditing process to request and examine documentation from a certain number of certified educators each year. Educators chosen for audit will have to produce the documents described in #8 above. 18. What teachers are not required to document 15 contact hours of professional development annually in order to keep their certificates active? A. Holders of IPC and PCI certificates who are required to document a total of 30 contact hours of professional development during their first four years of teaching B. Teachers who hold a CCPC certificate and who meet at least two of the following requirements. (1) 10 years of teaching experience (2) A Master's degree (3) National Board Certification C. Holders of Life certificates. 19. What should teachers do if their certificate is about to expire and they have not completed all the requirements to upgrade their certificate to the next certification level? A. Request an extension using the using the DESE Online Certification System. B. See Question #15 above for information on accessing the DESE Online Certification System. C. Click on Educator Certification System, then on New Applications, then on Extension Cert, and complete and submit the application. Note: Use the district code for the Archdiocese of St Louis, not for the particular Catholic school at D. Be sure to fulfill the necessary requirements during the effective dates of the extended certificate. 20. What must teachers do if they hold a CCPC certificate and they have not completed at least 15 contact hours of professional development during the last year? During the following year the teacher must earn the 15 contact hours for that year plus make up the hours for the previous year. If the teacher is not current by the end of that second year, his/her certificate will be inactivated by DESE. 21. What should a teacher do if his/her CCPC certificate has been inactivated by DESE? A. To reactivate a certificate, a teacher must earn 24 contact hours of professional development within six months of the time of application.. B. When the 24 contact hours have been earned, apply for a reactivation of the certificate using the DESE Online Certification System. C. See Question #15 above for information on accessing the DESE Online Certification System. D. Click on Educator Certification System, then on New Applications, then on Reactivation Cert, and complete and submit the application. Note: Use the district code for the Archdiocese of St Louis, not for the particular Catholic school at E. Note: that a criminal background check and fingerprinting is required for reactivation. F. In addition to the 24 contact hours of professional development, earn the 15 contact hours of professional development required for the current year. G. Earn 15 contact hours of professional development each year to prevent the certificate from being inactivated again. 22. How do I get a copy of my Missouri certificate? A. Certificates are now printed by the certificate holder from the DESE Online Certification System. B. See Question #15 above for information on accessing the DESE Online Certification System. C. Click on Educator Certification System, then on View Certificates, and then on Certificates Menu. D. Click on Educator s Certificate. A PDF will open with your certificate displayed. E. Save or print the PDF.

4 23. What should a teacher do if he/she is not and has never been certified in Missouri or in any other state? A. Make an appointment with the Teacher Certification Officer (TCO) at a university that offers a teacher preparation program that has been approved by DESE. The DESE web site contains a list of universities with approved programs in various certification areas. The TCO will review the teacher's previous university training and advise the teacher about what he/she must do to meet Missouri teacher certification requirements. (It is suggested that you contact more than one university. DESE approved programs are not identical. Some will take more previous coursework than others. Some have greater flexibility for completing requirements than others. B. Visit the web site of the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence, to obtain information about an alternative route to certification by passing an exam in teaching knowledge and an exam in subject area content. Note: Missouri will issue IPC certificates on the basis of passing the ABCTE tests only in the areas of Biology (9-12) Chemistry (9-12) English Language Arts (5-9, 9-12) General Science (5-9, 9-12) History (5-9, 9-12) Mathematics (5-9, 9-12) Physics (9-12). 24. How can a teacher who is certified in another state obtain a Missouri teaching certificate? A. An individual with a valid teaching certificate from another state can be granted a comparable certificate in Missouri. B. Apply using the DESE Online Certification System. C. See Question #15 above for information on accessing the DESE Online Certification System. D. Click on Educator Certification System, then on New Applications, and then on Non-MO Graduate. E. Provide the required documents and fees identified in the checklist that will pop up once you are in the online system and click on Non Missouri Graduate. 25. What number should a non-public school teacher use for county-district code when making an appointment for certification fingerprinting? Non-public school teachers use (six digit code) or 2300 (four-digit code). 26. What should a teacher do if he/she needs to update a Missouri teacher certificate because of a change of name? A. Obtain the following information: o Your last name as it currently appears on the DESE Website and your new last name o Your Educator ID number and your Social Security Number o a Copy of the documentation for your name change (marriage certificate, driver's license, etc.) o Your home address, daytime phone number, and address B. Send the documentation via US mail to: DESE- Educator Certification PO Box 480 Jefferson City MO Who can teachers and principals who have questions about Missouri teacher certification contact for assistance, and how can they be reached? A. DESE Web Site First check the DESE web site at Click on Educator Certification and then on Teachers and then on Teachers again. B. Catholic Education Office If the DESE web site does not answer your question, contact Stephanie Welling, Associate Superintendent for School Personnel, at the Catholic Education Office by phone at or by at (preferred) before phoning DESE. The DESE staff has been cut due to the status of the Missouri state government s budget. If the DESE certification staff is deluged with phone calls, it delays processing of certifications.

5 LOG OF PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITIES TO FULFILL THE REQUIREMENTS FOR MISSOURI STATE TEACHER CERTIFICATION TEACHER S NAME: SOCIAL SECURITY #: CERTIFICATE TYPE: IPC 30 contact hours total required during the four years the certificate is valid Date(s) of Activity CCPC Sponsor of Activity Topic(s) Activity Addressed 15 contact hours required each year to keep the certificate active Number of Contact Hours Transcript or Report Card Documentation Certificate or Letter from Sponsor Revised, August, 2011

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