How to Become a Teacher in Rhode Island

The commitment to become a teacher is an exciting one that rewards your hard work with the satisfaction that you are making a difference in the lives of your students. Our smallest state, Rhode Island, thinks big in terms of their educational system. If you’re considering becoming a teacher in this tiny but great state, keep reading to find out how you can become certified.

Rhode Island Teacher Certification Requirements

Rhode Island Teacher Certification Types

Rhode Island offers three types of teaching certifications that build off of one another. The Initial Certificate is valid for three years and is issued to those who have completed the appropriate degree and examinations from an educator preparation program. The Professional Certificate, valid for five years, is issued to those who have demonstrated success with their Initial Certificate. The Advanced Certificate is valid for seven years and is issued to teachers with high evaluation ratings while holding their Professional Certificate.

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Rhode Island Teacher Education

Teachers must have a Bachelor’s Degree from a Rhode Island-approved educator preparation program.

Rhode Island Teacher Certification Exam

Rhode Island teachers must pass the Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test and the relevant Praxis II content area test.

Teacher Experience

Rhode Island requires its applicants to participate in 60 hours of field experience as part of a practicum and 12 weeks of a student teaching experience.

Background Check

During your educator certification process, you must provide your criminal history on your application form. Before you begin interacting with students, you must undergo a background check, and you must keep this with you at all times during your practicum and student teaching experience.

Rhode Island Teacher Certification

Alternative Certification and Other Requirements

  • Rhode Island Alternative Teacher Certification: If you wish to become certified to teach in Rhode Island via an alternate route, you may participate in an Alternative Educator Program or apply for one of the Preliminary Educator Certificates. More information of Rhode Island’s alternative teaching certification options.
  • Teacher Certification Renewal: Your Initial Certificate is valid for five years, during which time you will be evaluated to see whether you can advance to the Professional Certificate. The Professional Certificate lasts for five years, at which point you may either renew or advance to the Advanced Certificate if your yearly ratings have been high enough. Receiving “Ineffective” ratings each year, however, makes you ineligible for certification renewal.
  • Rhode Island Substitute Teaching: Rhode Island issues one-year, renewable Substitute Permits to applicants with a Bachelor’s Degree.
  • Reciprocity: Out-of-state teachers who hold a valid teaching certification that is comparable to the Rhode Island certifications are able to teach in Rhode Island through reciprocity.

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What Does a Teacher Do in Rhode Island?

A state that prides itself on its educational system, Rhode Island requires all of its teachers to meet the government’s standards for being Highly Qualified. As such, you should be expected to be evaluated yearly on your performance and for this evaluation to affect your certification status. As a teacher, you are responsible for instructing students in the classroom, making lesson plans, collaborating with other teachers and communicating with the students’ families.

Rhode Island Teacher Salary

Annual salaries for teachers vary depending on the grade level and the content that they teach. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, elementary school teachers in Rhode Island make a yearly average of $66,160. Middle school teachers in the state make a yearly average of $65,380. Rhode Island high school teachers earn $65,490 on average each year.

Rhode Island Teacher Certification Links

Teacher Certification Programs in Rhode Island

Teacher Certification Programs in Rhode Island

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Choose your area of study and receive free information about programs you are interested in. Becoming a teacher is an important decision that requires commitment, dedication, and passion. Teacher certification requirements vary by state. However, there are a number qualifications that every state requires to teach at the public school level. Request information from multiple schools to find the best program and educational opportunity for you!