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Education Agency (TEA)


Routes to Certification

Alternative Teacher Certification Programs (ACPs)

Contact one of the many ACP programs statewide which offers the certification area in which you are intrested. Each program is unique and has its own requirements, deadlines, and training schedules. Check our ACP section of the website for current programs in each region of the state. 

  1. If required by the program, take the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) to verify competency in reading, math and English.  Programs may have other provisions to assess these skills, but this determination is totally controlled by the certification program.
  2. Order official copies of your transcripts from every university at which you have taken classes. Cumulative transcripts are not acceptable. Submit with your application packet to the program.
  3. Request and complete the application packet and submit it to the ACP by the program deadline.
  4. If the transcripts and test scores are acceptable, the ACP will contact you for a structured interview. Acceptance in the programs will be based on a cumulative merit of application factors. Program directors limit the number of applicants accepted, based on their experience of the numbers and types of vacancies which need to be filled in the schools.
  5. Training for most programs begins with the pre-employment phase. This may involve college courses, classes taught by consultants, or modules on the internet.
  6. During pre-employment phase, you will be contacting school districts to secure employment. When you are hired, a probationary certificate will be issued by SBEC. You will be paid the same salary that any first year teacher would receive.
  7. When school begins, you are the paid teacher of record in your classroom. You are an employee of the district, with all pay and benefits of a regular teacher. You will also continue to be mentored and trained by your ACP, according to their training program and schedule.
  8. During the program, you will take all Texas certification examinations (TExES) required for your teaching field. If you successfully complete a state approved certification program, pass your examinations, and receive a positive evaluation from your principal and ACP staff, you will be recommended to SBEC for a full Standard Professional Teacher Certification.
    Notes: Costs vary by program, usually ranging from $4,500 to $7,000. Part of the cost is paid during the pre-employment phase, with the remainder often deducted proportionally from the teacher's salary over the course of the teaching year.

Veterans Benefits - many of the programs have been approved for the use of G.I. Bill Educational Benefits. Ask the program director for more information.

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Last updated on May 17, 2018

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