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Alaska, AK Teacher Certification:

Teacher certification in Alaska has three major steps: the Initial certificate, the Professional certificate and the Master certificate. The Initial teacher certificate allows an applicant to be employed in an Alaska school district in a position that requires a certificate, but is non-renewable. To take the next step and continue teaching, applicants must meet the requirements for a Professional or Master certificate (both of which are renewable) during the life of the Initial certificate.

Special education is somewhat separate, as it requires an additional endorsement beyond other teaching certificate requirements. This endorsement is earned by completing an approved teacher training program in special education.

  

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Initial Teacher Certification:

The Initial certificate is valid for three years. Applicants must meet these requirements to qualify:

  • A minimum of a bachelor’s degree at a regionally accredited institution.
  • The successful completion of an approved teacher preparation program

    OR

current enrollment in a teacher preparation program. However, the program must be completed within two years of the Initial teaching certificate being issued. Special education programs, however, must be completed before applying for an Initial certificate.

  • Official passing scores from an approved basic competency exam.
  • Fingerprint cards for a background check submitted with the application
  • Complete application and fees (all fees are non-refundable).

Applicants who have yet to meet testing requirements but hold a current, valid teaching certificate in another state (out-of-country certificates aren’t accepted) may be issued a one-year teaching certificate, but must present official passing scores from an approved basic competency within a year from the date the Teacher Certification Office received the application. Once these are received, the Initial teaching certificate will be reissued for one more year.

Despite the certification being valid for three years, teachers are required to complete the Alaska studies and multicultural requirements within two years of being issued their Initial certificate.

Alaska Professional Teacher Certification:

While holding an Initial teaching certificate, beginning teachers must meet these requirements to qualify for a Professional teacher certificate: -Meet all the requirements for an Initial certificate.

  • Completion of an approved teacher preparation program.
  • Approved Alaska Studies coursework
  • Approved Alaska Multicultural/Cross-cultural Communications coursework
  • Recency Credit, or six semester-hours of credit earned during the previous five years
  • Passing scores from a content area exam.
  • Proof that applicant is currently employed in an Alaska public school district in a position that requires a certificate or that a fingerprint card be submitted with application.
  • Complete application and fees (all fees are non-refundable).
  • A Professional certificate is valid for five years, and to renew their Professional certificate an applicant must meet these requirements:-Recency Credit, or six-semester hours of creditwhile holding the Professional certificate being renewed. At least three of these hours must be upper division or graduate credit.
  • Proof that the applicant is currently employed in an Alaska public school district in a position that requires a certificate. If the applicant is not currently employed in such a position they will be required to provide fingerprint cards.
  • Complete applications and fees (all fees are non-refundable).

Master Teacher Certification:

Once an applicant holds either an Initial or Professional certificate, they may qualify for a Master certificate after meeting these requirements:

  • Meet all the requirements for a Professional certificate.
  • Hold a current National Board certification issued by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
  • Complete applications and fees (all fees are non-refundable).

A Master certificate is valid for ten years, and to renew their Master certificate an applicant must meet these requirements:

  • Renewed and up to date National Board certification
  • Recency Credit, or six-semester hours of creditwhile holding the Professional certificate being renewed. At least three of these hours must be upper division or graduate credit.
  • Proof that the applicant is currently employed in an Alaska public school district in a position that requires a certificate. If the applicant is not currently employed in such a position they will be required to provide fingerprint cards.
  • Complete applications and fees (all fees are non-refundable).

If for some reason an applicant has not met the requirements to renew their Master certificate, they must then meet all the current renewal requirements for a Professional certificate.