How to Earn Teacher Certification in Vermont
If you want to teach in Vermont, your first step is to get your degree and earn certification. While there are several pathways to doing this, your options depend on the level of education you need and your experience.
This guide can help you determine the pathway that’s right for you at any point in your career. Perhaps you’re beginning your journey and need to know about Vermont’s certification process. Or maybe you want to learn how to progress to advanced certification and earn an endorsement in a focused subject such as special education. Or, you’re a teacher looking to move to Vermont from another state. You’ll find all that information and more right here.
The short video below gives an overview of what to expect as a certified teacher in Vermont.
Vermont has two routes to licensure-the traditional route and the alternative route. The traditional route of obtaining licensure in Vermont is specific to their Level I and Level II licensure requirements (read about Level I and II requirements below).
Minimum Education Requirements for Vermont Teachers
According to the Vermont Agency of Education (VAE), you can apply for a Level I or Level II teacher license. Each level of licensure requires different types of professional learning credits. In addition to these credits, obtaining licensure requires completion of a Vermont-approved educator preparation program through a bachelor’s, post-baccalaureate or master’s degree program at a college or university that is regionally accredited or state-approved. This institution must also recommend you for licensure at completion of the program.
Level I License
This license is good for three years and, no matter your endorsement, requires three credits (or 45 hours) of new professional learning. Of this professional learning, at least one credit (or 15 hours), must apply to the knowledge and performance standards of the endorsement of choice. The remaining two credits must apply to the Core Teaching and Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators.
Level II License
Teachers are only eligible for Level II one they have practiced in Vermont for three years under a Level I license. The Level II license stays eligible for either five or seven years, depending on which you wish to apply for. For the seven-year license, any Level II endorsements must have nine credits (or 135 hours) of new professional learning. A minimum of three credits (or 45 hours) of this professional learning are required to apply toward the knowledge and performance standards of the endorsement. The other six credits must fall within the Core Teaching and Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators.
For the five-year license, six credits (or 90 hours) must apply to new professional learning, at least two credits (or 30 hours) of which must apply directly to the knowledge and performance standards of the endorsement of choice. The remaining four credits (or 60 hours) must fall within the Core Teaching and Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators.
Core Teaching and Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators
These Vermont educator standards are designed to be reflective of the stages of professional development in a teacher’s career. There are ten standards to meet for the Level I and II license.
Learner Development: Understanding student growth and development within cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional and physical areas.
Learning Differences: Understanding differences amongst individuals, cultures, and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments.
Learning Environments: Working with others to create environments that are conducive to individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage active participation and social interaction.
Content Knowledge: Understanding concepts, tools, and structures that lead to disciplined and meaningful learning experiences.
Application of Content: Understanding how to engage learners by connecting concepts and using different perspectives that will lead to critical and creative thinking.
Assessment: Understanding how to use multiple assessment methods to monitor student progress and guide teacher decision making.
Planning for Instruction: Planning instruction that support all students by drawing from content areas, curriculum, and cross-disciplinary skills.
Instructional Strategies: Understanding how to use varied instructional strategies to encourage learners to understand content areas and build meaningful connections and skills.
Professional Learning and Ethical Practice: Engaging in ongoing professional learning and adapting teaching strategies to meet the needs of all learners.
Leadership and Collaboration: Seeking leadership roles or opportunities appropriate for student learning and collaboration with others to ensure student and professional advancement.
All applicants must provide documentation of the required student teaching experience. In order to be eligible, applicants must complete at least 13 consecutive weeks of student teaching, or an equivalent learning experience approved by the Standards Board policy or by the requirements of the endorsement being sought.
Pass Vermont Certification Exams
Candidates are required to pass the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (CORE®). This exam is broken down into three parts: reading, writing, and mathematics. You must pass each of the three parts to be eligible for licensure in Vermont.
For specific teaching endorsements, the Praxis II content tests are required for applying. Driver and Traffic Safety Educators, Junior ROTC Instructors, School Nurses, Associate School Nurses, School Psychologists, Social Workers, and Work-Based Learning Coordinators are exempt from taking Praxis tests in Vermont.
To apply for certification in Vermont, you must provide several documents, fees, as well as fill out an online application. Note that you must meet all testing requirements before submitting your application.
The documents and fees required for an application include the following:
Official Transcripts: A copy of your transcript with the Registrar’s seal, as well as recommendation for licensure.
Professional Learning Documentation: If you have completed your program more than 10 years ago, you will need to show valid documentation of 90 hours of educator professional learning completed within the last 10 years.
Out-of-State License: A copy of your non-expired license from a state that has signed the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement, if you are applying from another state.
Tests: Official test scores if you have neither National Board Certification or an out-of-state license.
Application Processing Fee: This non-refundable fee of $50 will be charged before you can submit your application for review.
Initial License Fee: A $200 fee is required once you have been found eligible for initial licensure and once your fingerprints have been received. This fee covers the three-year license.
Fingerprint Record Check Fee: A $13.25 non-refundable fee is charged to the Vermont Department of Public Safety for fingerprint record checking.
Complete your account registration and application using the Vermont Online Licensing System for Educators. Once you have received confirmation from the Vermont Agency of Education that your license has been issued, you will need to log into your account and print your license from there.
Note that a Transcript Review process may be used to apply for initial licensure if the endorsement you seek is not part of a Vermont-approved teacher education program.
How Much Do Teachers in Vermont Make?
Salaries for educators in Vermont vary depending on educational specialty. Here are median annual salaries for some common education positions, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
|Early Childhood Educator||$36,480|
|Elementary School Teacher||$61,220|
|Secondary School Teacher||$61,130|
|Special Education Teacher||$62,050|
Job Growth for High School Teachers through 2031
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics, 2021
Subject matter certifications, or endorsements, allow teachers to specialize their area of instruction. Here are some of the most common in Vermont, and how you can earn them.
Early Childhood Education
Early childhood education in Vermont allows educators to teach young children birth through PK, PK through third grade, or birth through third grade, depending on the endorsement.
To qualify for this endorsement, a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, is required in early childhood education at the birth-to-5 and/or 5-8 age levels. A practicum at both the birth-to-5 and 5-8 age levels are required for the full birth through third grade authorized teaching. If you wish to receive endorsement in the K-3 span, you must pass the ETS Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects (5001 Series) PRAXIS II test.
Elementary School Teacher
This teacher is qualified to teach children in grades K-6.
In Vermont, you are required to have completed a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, in elementary education at both the primary (K-2) and upper elementary (3-6) instructional levels. You are also required to pass the Praxis II Subject Assessment in Elementary Education – Test Code 5001 series (5002-5005).
Middle School Teacher
In Vermont, a middle school is referred to as “middle grades,” or grades 5-9. You will be authorized to teach one or more of content areas, depending on the endorsement of your choosing: English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies.
Educational requirements include a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, in science, social studies, math, or English at the middle grades level (5-9).
Substitute Teacher Certification
Each local Vermont school board is required to have a policy establishing employment qualifications for substitute teachers, so it’s best to contact specific schools to determine your eligibility to substitute teach. At minimum, you must have graduated from high school. If you are an unlicensed substitute, you may substitute for up to 30 consecutive student days in the same assignment.
Beyond 30 days, the superintendent must apply for an Emergency or Provisional License for the person. If you are a licensed educator, you may substitute in a field outside of your endorsement field for 30 days in the same assignment. Upon application by the Superintendent, the Standards Board can choose to grant you an extension for an additional 30 days. If you are a licensed educator and wish to substitute teach beyond 60 days outside of your endorsement field, the Superintendent must apply for a Provisional License.
Physical Education (PE) Certification
With this certification, you will be authorized to teach physical education in grades PK-6, 7-12, or PK-12.
For the Vermont Physical Education certification, a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, in physical education at the elementary (PK-6) or middle/secondary (7-12) instructional level is required. If you wish to receive the full PK-12 authorization, a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, in physical education at both the PK-6 and 7-12 instructional levels is required. You may also receive specialty certificates, currently in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), Automated External Defibrillator (AED), and first aid. The Praxis II Subject Assessment Physical Education – Test Code 5095 is required for this certification.
Special Education Certification
With a special education certification, you can provide early childhood education, birth through preschool, and early intervention and special education services. These responsibilities include service coordination, case management and comprehensive evaluation services for children up to six years old.
Educational requirements include two options. One option is to possess a bachelor’s degree with a recommendation for licensure in early childhood special education. The second option calls for a minimum of 21 early childhood special education credits and a minimum of a practicum (60 hours), or the equivalent, in early childhood special education at both the infant/toddler (birth to age 2) and preschool (age 3 to 6) levels.
English as a Second Language Certification
Teaching English as a Second Language to students, known as English Language Learners (ELLs) in Vermont, means facilitating English language understanding and supporting students in all content areas through collaboration. You can choose to be certified to teach grades PK-6, 7-12, or PK- 12.
If you wish to teach English Language Learners at the elementary (PK-6) or middle/secondary (7-12) instructional level, you are required to complete a practicum, or the equivalent, for the respective certification. For the full PK-12 authorization, a minimum of a practicum, or the equivalent, at both the PK-6 and 7-12 instructional levels is required. You must also pass the English Language Learner PRAXIS II Test: English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Test Code: 5362.
Certifications for School Administrators
Administrative certifications for principals and superintendents share many of the same qualifications for endorsement, with a few exceptions.
For someone to qualify for an administrator endorsement, the candidate must complete hold a master’s degree, demonstrate competence in the Core Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators, and complete an Administrative Internship consisting of a minimum of 300 hours of supervised field experience in two or more types of school settings. Furthermore, the candidate must have three or more years of PK-12 teaching experience It is necessary to hold knowledge and application of school law, state regulations, and school board process to develop policies. Candidates must also complete the School Leaders Licensure Assessment – Test Code: 6011. If you are seeking an administrator endorsement through Vermont’s transcript review process, you must have completed a Vermont-approved program or hold a current administrator endorsement.
As for the position of superintendent, you must also hold a master’s degree, demonstrate competence in the Core Leadership Standards for Vermont Educators and complete an administrative Internship consisting of a minimum of 300 hours of supervised field experience in two or more types of school settings. Specialty requirements include five or more years of experience comprised of three or more years of PK-12 teaching experience, and two or more years of educational administration experience. In addition, it is required that you complete the School Leaders Licensure Assessment – Test Code: 6011. For educators seeking any administrator endorsement through Vermont’s transcript review process, you are required to complete a Vermont-approved program or hold a current administrator endorsement.
Teaching Reciprocity Agreements in Vermont
The National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) created the Interstate Agreement to clearly outline which states will accept other states’ teacher certifications.
Below you will find Vermont’s guidelines for teaching reciprocity.
|NASDTEC Interstate Agreement||Yes, Vermont participates in the NASDTEC Agreement.|
|State Grants Full Reciprocity||No.|
|Coursework Requirements||Additional coursework is required for some candidates. Those with 10 or more years between the time of recommendation of licensure and application for licensure must meet the updated requirements established by Standards Board policy. Applying from a non-NASDTEC state may require transcript review.|
|Test-out or Exemption||No.|
|Assessment Requirements||Yes, but not for all candidates. Applying from a NASDTEC state with no license requires the same steps as an approved educator preparation program in Vermont, which includes testing.|
|Different Requirements Based on Experience||No.|
|Special Reciprocity for Advanced Credentials||Yes. Vermont has two main licensure levels: Provisional and Professional. Licensed applicants from a NASDTEC state may be eligible for a Level I Professional Educator’s License, but those from a non-NASDTEC state and candidates whose category of licensure is not covered by the agreement will be evaluated by transcript review on a case-by-case basis.|
Information reported by the Education Commission of the States.
Alternate Teaching Certification
The minimum requirements for an applicant to be considered for an alternate teaching certification path in Vermont include a bachelor’s degree with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 from a regionally accredited or Vermont-approved institution in the liberal arts and sciences, or in the area of endorsement they seek. This alternate preparation process is approved by the Standards Board. If an advanced degree is required for certification, you must hold an advanced degree in the specialty in which you wish to be certified. Any Praxis Core (or alternate test scores) and Praxis II tests must be passed, with scores submitted to Vermont’s Agency of Education.
If the minimum requirements are met, Vermont allows for a “Peer Review” system for alternate licensure. This process requires a portfolio that is reviewed by experienced teachers, ending in an interview. It is recommended that potential candidates begin their portfolio once they have been accepted to apply for licensure.
Troops to Teachers
Troops to Teachers is a service for qualifying service members within the Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) to help the transition into K-12 public school teaching careers. With a presence nationwide, Troops to Teachers caters to those looking to teach in the state of Vermont.
Basic education requirements include a bachelor’s degree, completing a teacher preparation program, student teaching, a background check and state testing.