Do you want to be a better teacher? Perhaps pursuing National Board Certification is the next step on your career path.
I have known that I was going to be a teacher since I was seven and Santa left a mini chalkboard under the tree. As a freshman at Transylvania University, I proudly declared my major to be “teaching math.” While my peers hemmed and hawed over their futures, I plunged into education courses, observed local teachers, and dreamed of changing students’ lives by introducing them to the quadratic formula.
It was during college that I first heard that offensive myth: “Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.” As graduation neared, my friends began to say things like, “Well, if what I really want to do (insert dream job with high salary) doesn’t pan out, I can always teach.” My chosen career had an image problem: People viewed teaching as Plan B, a field for those whose ambitions had gone by the wayside. It was an upsetting realization, but I didn’t let it deter me. Instead, I became even more vocal about my belief that teaching is not only a worthwhile profession, but also one that is respectable and quite challenging to do well.
Discovering the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS)
Fast forward to 2007, when I had been teaching middle school and high school math for six years. I had just completed my master’s degree and was itching to find other opportunities for professional growth. That’s when I came across a flyer about certification by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. National Board Certification is an advanced teaching credential available to any current teacher who has a bachelor’s degree, a valid teaching license, and at least three years of classroom experience. The flyer invited me to “join the ranks of the nation’s most accomplished teachers who help students develop the necessary skills to thrive in school, in the workplace, and in the 21st century global economy.”
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