National Board Certification - Is it worth it?

initial & retake Jul 04, 2021

Are you seeking to reflect upon and improve your teaching practice?  If you answered yes, National Board Certification for teachers may be just the thing you need to reach the next level. Let’s dive into the process to see if it would be worth it for you!

What? It is a National Certification process (Think advanced board certifications that doctors or therapists achieve and add behind their names.) that is centered around five core propositions that show teachers are committed to their students and learning, are knowledgeable of the subjects they teach, and can effectively teach those subjects to students. In addition, National Board teachers are members of learning communities, and they're responsible for managing and monitoring their learning, as well as thinking systematically about their practice.

When? The registration window opens each year in September and portfolio entries (called components) are due by mid-May of that school year. To be eligible for a certification, you must have a bachelor's degree, have completed three years of successful teaching, and hold a valid state teaching license (or meet your state's licensure requirements for a school counselor).

How much? The total cost is about $1,900—each component is $475 (4 total components). You have the option of submitting components separately over three years which makes the process flexible and affordable for all. Once becoming certified, a renewal portfolio ($475) is due every five years to maintain your certification.

It is right for you if:

  • You value differentiation of instruction in your practice.
  • You want to be an even more effective and reflective practitioner.
  • You love examining your practice and reaching higher levels of expertise with your content/pedagogy.
  • You embrace a growth mindset.
  • You are willing to invest a large amount of time and energy into the process. (Total number of hours depends on how many components you do each year)
  • You want additional leadership and advocacy opportunities in the field of teaching.
  • Your school/district/state values advanced teaching credentials that lead to more benefits and/or opportunities for you as a teacher.
  • You want to move to the NEXT LEVEL in the teaching profession

It may not be right for you if:

❏ You don’t have the time to invest in growing into the NBPTS standards.

❏ You would only do it for the salary increase.

❏ You don’t want advanced opportunities within the profession for leadership or advocacy. 

❏ You aren’t able to invest the money required to pursue the process.

❏ Your school/district/state offers no incentives and you don’t see a reason to become a National Board Certified Teacher without those incentives.

In a nutshell, the National Board Certification process isn’t easy, cheap, or quick to complete, but it IS WORTH IT!  Becoming a National Board Certified teacher will open many new doors for you.  You will find yourself competing against - YOU - and finding ways to make your practice stronger through constant reflection and growth! 

Go ahead… sign up to challenge yourself today at www.nbpts.org

If you want to know more about cohorts and coaching programs so you Never Work Alone… visit me at www.traceybryantstuckey.com

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