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Advice on education degrees - tried the education board, but may have more luck here

overbearingmomoverbearingmom Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
My daughter wants to be a teacher, but she's not sure what level (I think she's more suited for elementary or preschool because she loves little kids), so we are thinking it makes sense for her to go to a program where they start with classroom observation in freshman year, but in general, is it better to have 2 years of general studies and then start with education classes? I think she'll likely at least have a concentration in Special Ed, as her brother and cousin are on the autism spectrum, and she's very empathetic to that.

Would love any college recommendations with programs based on your advice. She's looking at Drexel and Butler, UCONN so far. But we live in California. Am I missing any on the west coast?

Replies to: Advice on education degrees - tried the education board, but may have more luck here

  • overbearingmomoverbearingmom Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    She will likely have no debt because we don't anticipate receiving financial aid, as we didn't with our son. We're in Northern CA and I don't want her to stay here, but reciprocal licensing is definitely on our radar.

    It's nearly impossible for a single woman to make a go of teaching in Northern California without living at home for a time or being supplemented by mom and dad, and we plan our CalExit once she's out of school.

    Sonoma State has a good program and she'll likely apply, and the CSU's have decent education programs, but not much of a campus life. She'll check out Chico as well, though I think it's too rural for a suburban girl. Plus, just in general, I'd like her to have a view of other parts of the country.
  • maybearobotmaybearobot Registered User Posts: 16 Junior Member
    What area of the country are you thinking of moving to? Also, is there a part of the country she is interested in experiencing? The answers to those questions is what I would use to steer her search.
  • overbearingmomoverbearingmom Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    She didn't want to go anywhere, but now that's she has a few schools she is interested that are OOS, she seems open to anywhere. I'm not quite sure where my husband and I will end up, either in New England, where we lived in and after college, or maybe Colorado or surrounding states where we know people.
  • PepperJoPepperJo Registered User Posts: 249 Junior Member
    edited May 14
    I have been a public school teacher for almost 25 years in California, and I'm a UC graduate. California can be very unyielding in accepting teaching credentials earned from other states, but with a looming teacher shortage, that might have changed. Other states are more accommodating. If your daughter is truly interested in pursuing education, I would have her enroll in a university/college that specifically offers an undergraduate degree or explicit path for education to avoid having to take additional coursework in a credential program down the road. The way to secure job security in education is to obtain a special education credential, or major in communication disorders to become a speech and language pathologist. UCI and Cal State Fullerton have very reputable teacher education programs.
  • aunt beaaunt bea Registered User Posts: 9,765 Senior Member
    @Pepperjo, the OP didn't mention Speech and Language, and she didn't mention that her child wanted to go to grad school for speech and language. This is a very difficult program to gain admission into graduate school, as well as the job itself and requires years of study and clinical practicum.
  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 7,815 Senior Member
    Like other teachers here, I suggest she get her degree in the state in which she plans to teach. It's so much easier to simply graduate with certification.

    And an added perk is that, during her observations and student teaching, she'll be able to network with people who will be hiring, or who know the people who will be hiring. The world of education is smaller than many realize; the right recommendation from someone in a school upstate might give her an edge in applying for a job downstate.

    Have her check the CA state education site for certification requirements-- will she eventually need to get her Master's? It varies from one state to the next; I needed it to be certified in NY. If so, make sure the budget will eventually make that possible.
  • tutumom2001tutumom2001 Registered User Posts: 1,149 Senior Member
    My daughter has had teachers who are nationally certified. I admit I don't know how the process works, but I would think it is worth looking into the program for the portability of the license.
  • overbearingmomoverbearingmom Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    What do you suggest if she's not sure where she wants to teach, is open to other parts of the country. If she wants to teach here, she and I are still connected to many of her teachers, and she has been a student helper at temple for years. In fact, she is interviewing for a program there for next year that is geared towards developing teens who want to pursue education, so I think she'll have connections back home. I also know school teachers around the country that would help her in a second.
  • misty88981misty88981 Registered User Posts: 34 Junior Member
    National certification is extremely laborious and time-consuming. The vast majority of teachers who choose that path already have a state license and are practicing teachers as they work on national certification.
  • zoosermomzoosermom Registered User Posts: 26,241 Senior Member
    I agree with the folks who are encouraging your daughter to figure out where she wants to teach and go to school there. My D is a teacher in NYC, where we live. She did her freshman year at a lovely out of state college, but when she got sick and had to take a medical leave, she decided not to return because she understood that it would be hard to impossible to get a teaching job in a place where she hadn't student taught and didn't have the proper credentials for certification.

    The thing you have to understand is that no matter how much teachers want to help her, if she doesn't have the right arrangement of classes, the right number of observation and student teaching hours, she simply can not be hired. And as much as they might like her, they also like the people who student taught in their classrooms or departments for a year, and those people get the jobs.

    Every state is very different, and a difference in observation hours from one state to the next could preclude certification, which means she can't be hired. Also, if she decides to teach above grade six, in many states an education degree is not allowed. Pre-K requirements are also very different from state to state. My D teaches special ed and loves it, as does my son-in-law, but those jobs are hard to come by nowadays because after the financial crisis everyone and their cousin added special ed and ESL, which means the jobs aren't as plentiful as one might think.
  • AmkngkAmkngk Registered User Posts: 183 Junior Member
    My daughter refused to limit her search to the state where we live. She simply doesn’t know where she will want to teach, and refused to decide that at 17. She is happy at Syracuse in the Elementary Inclusive Ed program. She was in schools from her first semester, and increasing the time with each semester (except her upcoming semester abroad). It is very expensive; she was fortunate to get a nice merit award and to have been born into a family that will allow her to graduate debt free as long as she works hard during the summer.

    Perhaps being certified in NY will hurt her down the road, but at this point she loves her program and is still not limiting herself to teaching in one particular place.
  • overbearingmomoverbearingmom Registered User Posts: 157 Junior Member
    Thanks @Amkngk for your perspective. For me, being at the right school and trying new things is the most important for my kids. It's unfortunate that for teaching, as for many professional tracks, you need to know so much about your future at 17. She doesn't really want to go to NY, though I hear a lot of the SUNY's are strong for education.

    Truly, though we haven't visited yet, of all her choices, Butler seems the best fit with her personality and I could see her being happy in Indiana, at least for her first years. Is it hard for an established teacher to move? I stayed where I graduated, across the country from my folks, for almost a decade after. Of course, it was Boston, a very attractive place for young people to stay.

    Of my kids, I think she will be the one to live close to us. We might consider that ourselves, as we are pretty open to where we land as well.

    I've heard mixed reviews of University of Hartford that does have a dual Elem Ed/Spec Ed certification. Anyone familiar? I think she wouldn't mind being close to her brother, but not at UCONN. And if they both graduate near there, I'm hoping they'll stay near there and we can move nearby.
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,835 Senior Member
    A friend's son went to Emory U and majored in education but they did not offer the classes needed to get certification. I thought it was strange. He did not start out with the major but changed to it along the way. Be sure the schools she applies to will give her everything needed to get a license. Some schools have limited spots relative to those who want that degree and admission to the school of education is competitive- students apply while in their second year of college.
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