Defining Generations: Careers in Education

Defining Generations: Careers in Education

Do you still remember your favorite teacher? Do you remember what made that particular teacher so special that you were able to remember and admire them for years to come?

For centuries, teaching has been acknowledged as one of the most rewarding careers that one can pursue. Teachers have directed the education of students and influenced generations through the interpretation and application of knowledge, skills, and values.

Many will say that they love to teach simply out of a desire to help children learn and grow. Others may say that they were moved to teach out of a sense of commitment to their community, an intellectual fascination with a particular subject (e.g., science or math), or even inspired by a teacher from their own past.

What is your reason? Whatever it may be, without a doubt, teachers impact millions of lives through their passion for the profession of teaching.

Now it can be your turn to inspire the next generation of astronauts, nobel prize winners, or even president of the Unites States.

Education and Certification

Today, teachers play a variety of roles in the classroom including: educator, motivator, guide, role model, counselor, coach, and disciplinarian. A teacher must also be prepared for the demands on their time outside of the classroom: grading papers, planning lessons, field trips, school functions, and dealing with a myriad of administrative tasks.

In the state of Pennsylvania, a person who wishes to become a teacher at a state-funded schools must first obtain professional qualifications or credentials from a university or college. In the United States and U.S. territories (and in many foreign countries), teachers and other education personnel are required by law to obtain a qualifying credential. In Pennsylvania, a student looking to become a student must first become certified; in some states it is referred to as a license.

Pennsylvania has high standards for admission into the teaching profession and every candidate for certification must meet those standards whether trained in Pennsylvania or an out-of-state college or university. Pennsylvania offers a wide variety of certifications from a wide range of college and universities.

What are the types of standard certificates issued for professional educators in Pennsylvania?

Type refers to the nature of the job the certificate qualifies the holder to do:

  • Instructional Certificates are issued to persons whose primary responsibility shall be direct contact with learners in teaching-learning situations.
  • Educational Specialist Certificates are issued to persons whose primary responsibility shall be to render professional service other than classroom teaching.
  • Supervisory Certificates are issued to persons whose primary responsibility shall be to supervise educational programs and direct the activities of professional and nonprofessional employees in such programs.
  • Administrative Certificates are issued to persons whose primary responsibility shall be to direct, operate, supervise and administer the organizational and general activities of a school.
  • Vocational Instruction or Vocational Intern Certificates are issued to persons whose primary responsibility is vocational instruction within occupational/technical curricula.

For more information on teaching certifications in the state of Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Related Information:

Interview with Patrick Dowd, former president of the Pittsburgh Board of Education
Information for teachers or those interested in pursuing a career in education

Jobs in Education
Current education administration jobs in Pittsburgh from

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