Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

spanishteacher
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:41 pm

Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

Hello,

I have been following this forum for a while, but only now I have created an account. I have read a lot of the information about licenses, am aware of TEACH NOW (as well as the provisional licenses some people always bring up), but I was hoping to still ask a licensing questions specific to my case.

I am a native Spanish speaker and have been (luckily, I guess) teaching Spanish in international schools for a while (three countries, different regions). Maybe I am lucky since I have been doing this without an actual teaching license (I am single, so I guess maybe that has played in my favor). My main "qualification" for this has been a Masters degree in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language. However, I do not have an actual teaching license (in my country there is no "teaching license" as such, only a register of teachers and that is only if you work at a public school). I would like to get a more "acceptable" teaching license, hopefully, a US-based one. Here's some context information:

* I am not a US citizen. But I do have a SSN as I once lived in the US (one of those "work experience" programs, when I was younger).
* I am not an EU citizen either.
* I am a native Spanish speaker and have been teaching Spanish as a foreign language for over 8 years now.
* My undergraduate degree is non-related (business). I have a Masters degree in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language
* I would like to obtain a teaching license in Spanish (Secondary) while continuing my work at my current school
* Here's the hard part: I would like to obtain this license the "fastest" way possible, without any tests involving checking for English proficiency, as I am a horrible test-taker for these kind of things (I have seen the MTEL "Communication and Literacy Skills test" and I have to say I am not super confident). Because of this, I am not very sure about the MA provisional license or something like TEACH NOW. I have no issues with tests about Spanish proficiency. Before anyone questions if I should be working as a teacher while not being confident in passing an English test, please know I have been a successful teacher in 3 different second-tier IB schools and have had no issue with meeting all expectations, including report-writing, talking to parents, etc. etc. I am simply horrible at English proficiency tests and thus prefer to avoid them.

Any ideas? Are there any states that have easier paths specifically for World Languages teachers (maybe due to shortages) and which I can apply to as a non-US citizen? I know about the CT path for experienced teachers, but that path does not help me as they did not accept my prior education completely and gave me an insane number of credits and specific courses that I would need to take if I wanted to apply for that... I know the answer is probably "no" but thought maybe there is a state that allows my experience in addition to taking a Praxis (or similar) in Spanish in order to get a license (even if limited)?

Thanks

unsure
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Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by unsure »

Maybe try the Assessment Only (AO) route for QTS. You might have to be in a British International School, but it's simple and once you've done it, that's it.
https://www.sunderland.ac.uk/study/shor ... route-qts/

PsyGuy
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Post by PsyGuy »

@unsure

How does AO work in this case? There isnt a AO EPP/ITT provider that doesnt require English language proficiency. Sunderlands entry requirements are:
* An honours degree, normally a 2:2 or above
* GCSE grade C, or equivalent, in mathematics and English language. If you intend to teach at primary level you also need at least a grade C in a science subject
* Full proficiency in English language
* Recent significant experience of teaching in at least two schools
* Teaching experience across two key stages in their chosen age range: either 3-11 (primary), 7-14 (middle), or 11-19 (secondary)
* Be placed at a UK National Curriculum school for the period of registration and assessment
* An enhanced check from the Disclosure and Barring Service and Fitness-To-Teach approval, or International equivalent if overseas
* References recommending you for the Assessment Only Route from the headteacher/principal of the schools in which you have gained your experience
* Your numeracy and literacy competency will be assessed continuously throughout the course following the DfE’s removal of the Professional Skills Test.
We invite potential candidates to an interview where you present a portfolio of initial evidence that shows clear progress towards meeting the QTS standards. 
If English is not your first language, please see our English language requirements.
https://www.sunderland.ac.uk/help/apply ... ou-accept/

The English requirements consist of a number of English proficiency tests or a degree.

It doesnt need to be a BS but an IS that uses the UK NC will suffice, it doesnt even need to be inspected.

spanishteacher
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:41 pm

Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

Thank you PsyGuy.

I have seen many post of yours regarding certification requirements. Any suggestions for my case? I mean, other than the provisional license from MA? I did see that MA is now doing some (not all) of the MTEL examinations online (which reduces the stress level for me), but unfortunately, the Spanish MTEL is not one of them (so I could do the basic communication test online, but would need to physically travel to MA just to take the Spanish exam, which is not really viable given the current situation worldwide).

Any creative ideas on possible certifications paths for me that can be done online? I really want to stay away from Teach Now because it is a lot of money, and a lot of examinations (I prefer the MA route in that case as I already have enough experience with international IB schools that I am mostly concerned is simply in getting a formal teaching qualification just to tick that box).

Smoko
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Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by Smoko »

I know this isn't what you want to hear, but I would seriously reconsider your stance on taking English tests. Based on the way you write and your prior experience I have no doubt that you could pass. I'm also not sure you have any other choice, because even if you tried to circumvent exams by applying for full teaching courses (such as iPGCE/PGCEi/Assessment Only/Teach-Now) the ones I've looked at still require English exams for entry.

PsyGuy
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Post by PsyGuy »

@spanishteacher

How is the MA provisional credential viable, the required communication literacy exam is essentially an English language test?

Your HORs registration option is a credential, though I understand you are not in the regulated DE system.

You have a US SS# so you could try applying for the UT AEL, you might slip through the cracks.
You could try for registration (partial at best) from the GTCs in Scotland or NI they dont have the language proficiency requirements of GB.
Something like ACSI would be available but its not a credential.

There are some even more esoteric options but youd have to be there or meet other requirements that arent generally available by distance.

spanishteacher
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:41 pm

Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

Hi PsyGuy,

Tha MA provisional is not viable in terms of the required communication literacy exam, but as I stated, the fact that I could do it online would reduce the stress a bit for me... But having to travel to MA just to take a Spanish does not seem very viable...

UT AEL sounds interesting. But it is not renewable and time-limited. What would I do once it expires?

PGCE is not an option as I would have to work in the UK. PGCEi is not really a credential (in a way, I think it is the same as my M.Ed. as it really is not an actual teaching license).

I cannot register in my home country, as my home country only registers teachers working in public schools. I would need to travel there and obtain a local job at a public school just so that I can register. So that is not an option.

GTCS is interesting. But because my M.Ed. is not the same as "teacher training" my application would not go through. I imagine it would probably be the same for GTCNI.

I would not mind hearing about the other esoteric options you have in mind, even if just out of curiosity.

PsyGuy
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Post by PsyGuy »

@spanishteacher

No one knows if the UT AEL is going to be renewable. It gets you three years, where if you teach during that entire period you would then meet the requirements for the HI Standard (Professional grade) credential.

The PGCEi isnt a credential, its an academic qualification below a Masters.

Returning home may not appeal to you, but what would it require? Getting a job and then registering, and then resigning? Thats a trip home, see some family, do an interview at mot and then filling out some paperwork. Thats the easiest plan so far that doesnt require English testing.

Your M.Ed might slip though the cracks and be considered an EPP/ITT program or "teacher training". All of these pathways involve finding a crack and hoping the merits of bureaucracy let you escape into one of them. The more cracks you try the better your probability of finding one that works.

Th other options involve getting an appointment or travel, for example; in HK anyone who teaches in IE or DE needs to be registered, one form they offer is for unqualified ITs called permitted status, you could do that but it requires obtaining an appointment and travel and that generally describes the other options. Your either going to have to travel, get job, or take an English exam if one of those cracks (such as the UT AEL) doesnt work out for you. That position is the ACSI, but its not credential. Aside from the UT AEL, there just isnt a I dont want to do anything, or go anywhere, give me a western credential for foreigners pathway.

spanishteacher
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:41 pm

Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

Hi again PsyGuy

I agree on PGCEi not being a credential, that's what I meant when I said it is not an actual teaching license.

I am intrigued by the idea of UT AEL and then progressing into HI Standard. Which of the path options for HI Standard would that be? Option D? Would HI take the UT AEL license as an acceptable license to meet the requirement under Option D?

My understanding is that the HI Standard requires 3 years of experience. If this means 3 years of experience while holding a license, would this not mean that once I would not be able to apply as the UT AEL license would then be expired? How long does the UT AEL license last for? If it is 2 years, how would it work to get the HI Standard license? Or do the 3 years of experience required by HI are not necessarily under that same license that one is using to meet the criteria of having a license issued by another qualifying jurisdiction?

PsyGuy
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Post by PsyGuy »

@spanishteacher

It would be option D.

They may accept it, they did in the past with the APT credential.

Its three years while holding a credential. Its timing, you obtain the UT AEL, you teach for two years under that credential then apply for the HI Provisional (Entry grade) under option B, continue teaching for another year and finish your third year sometime, then apply for the HI Standard credential.

spanishteacher
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2020 12:41 pm

Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

Hi Psyguy,

Sounds interesting, but I am not sure it woud work. Here's why (and let me know if there's an error in my reasoning)
1. I can apply for UT AEL. This gives me 2 years (max).
2. Before the 2 years are up, I can apply to HI Provisional under Option B (having a university diploma and a valid license from another state). This gives me a non-renewable 3 year license.
3. I then need to move into a HI Standard. However, I don't see any paths that would apply. Option D would not work now, because it is aimed at people having a license from another state. And at that point my license from UT AEL would have expired. All other pathways to HI Standard (based on having an existing license from Hawaii) seem to involve having completed teacher training, so I would be back to square 1.

Given this, I am not sure if this pathway actually would work?

PsyGuy
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Post by PsyGuy »

@spanishteacher

To clarify, if you obtain the UT credential and then apply immediately for the HI standard credential because you have IB experience in IB ISs and they might accept your prior experience, then that would be route D.
If you did that and were rejected by HI initially, worked two years on the UT credential and then obtained the HI Provisional credential and worked until you had three years post credential experience, you would met the experience requirement to transition internally from the HI provisional to the HI Standard credential.

Modernist
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Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by Modernist »

'there just isn't a I don't want to do anything, or go anywhere, give me a western credential for foreigners pathway.'

You missed the part that should include 'a western credential that lasts for my entire career and doesn't require any PD or additional expense or effort ever again, but at the same time grants me access to the best-paying and most desirable jobs for as long as I choose to work.'

I think this statement should be a sticky for this forum. It is truly amazing to me how many people post the same question/request over and over again. Either this or the 'I'm a US/UK citizen but I don't want to go back and actually get a qualification, can't I spend virtually no money and stay at my current job and get the same benefits as someone else spends tens of thousands of USD/GBP and years of effort to get?'

I sometimes want to go back and count the threads. Sometimes.

spanishteacher
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Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by spanishteacher »

@Modernist
I would really question whether spending "tens of thousands of USD/GBP" should automatically equate to someone automatically deserving "benefits" (the term you used). Should getting an acceptable qualification be just a matter of paying into it? I also would question the "years of effort to get". Many qualified teachers obtain their teaching license through programs that last just 1 year or less; and then of course there are those who obtain their license through things such as the MA route often suggested in these forums. So I am not sure exactly why it should be so "bad" to ask if there is a way for someone with a graduate degree in teaching a specific subject and actual teaching experience to get their experience and education to be taken into account so that they don't have to start from scratch when they already have made a career in international education.

You mentioned also "that lasts for my entire career and doesn't require any PD or additional expense or effort ever again". I never said such thing, nor was it my intention. I am aware that if I were to get a US license, it would require PD to maintain. Although, since you mention that point,I'm not an expert, but I was under the impression that UK teachers with QTS don't need to do any PD to retain their QTS status. Do you find that also to be an issue?

Although I can see where you are coming from, I think you have misread where I'm coming from. "Qualifications" vary depending on the country of origin. In my country, having a Masters of Education in my field automatically qualifies me to be a teacher (there is no formal "paper" I can produce saying this, as the teacher register is strictly for public school teachers, which I have never been part of). Although a NACES evaluation of my degree did not come out as a Teacher Training program (it simply says it is a Masters in Education with the specific field of teaching Spanish), that's exactly what it was; it was a 1-year program aimed at teaching me how to teach Spanish as a Foreign language, and it included having to carry out student teaching at high school level (which I was allowed to do at the place where I was working at). In addition to this, I'm close to having a decade of IB teaching experience in international schools (9 years in June) and am highly involved with IBEN, which I would say as a whole make me, in practical terms, a much more qualified teacher in my field than many license-holders (whether they spent thousands or dollars or not). I have been able to work like this for 8 and a half years, working in reputable (including in Western Europe). I could probably continue to work like this as I have a solid CV, but am simply looking to improve my marketability a bit, and I don't see why inquiring about the most practical and cost-effective option for this should be looked down upon.

@PsyGuy
Thank you for the feedback. The information you provided is very useful indeed.

Modernist
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Re: Teaching license (Spanish) for non US non European citizen

Post by Modernist »

Hey, you're going to make the choice you want to make, that's up to you. I can tell, as with others, you are clearly articulate and educated and have considered what you're doing. I'm not sure you're going to get what you seem to want, but...

I am fully willing to state that I don't agree with the notion that the USA or US states should act as some sort of universal pool of credentials for any English speaking person from anywhere in the world who wishes to have one. Absolutely, that's my opinion. US credentials should be for US citizens or residents, people who have been trained to deliver American curriculum to American students, and have experience in American schools. It's not America's fault that your country doesn't issue non public school teaching qualifications, just as it isn't, say, France's responsibility to provide health care for Americans because America can't seem to manage to provide decent universal health care to its own citizens. I'd personally like to have a Japanese teaching license (Finnish? Turkish? Uruguayan?), myself, but, big shock, Japan doesn't offer qualifications to non-Japanese. Why should you be any different than me?

You don't seem to have considered how a CV with a qualification that has absolutely zero DE experience in the US is going to be self-evidently obvious, how it came to be. Whether you launder a UT AEL via HI over a span of 5 years, even if that actually works, which even PsyGuy notes it very well may not (IF Hawaii accepts previous, non-US IB experience, 'might' 'may', quite a lot depends on if the Hawaii education authorities accept being the credential laundering service of all the states going forward, just as all the TeachNow scammers are desperately trying to scrape themselves to QTS before the UK authorities stop permitting TN to set the terms of QTS from abroad)...even if you get it, so what? You obviously think you will get a benefit from it, moving up the tiers or having some kind of job security. Obviously, there are many schools who want the 'license box tick' as has been mentioned on this forum, sure, but are those the kinds of schools you're talking about? I think not. Any first-tier or desirable school is not looking for a box-ticker, they want a genuinely experienced American teacher, with not just a paper qualification but actual DE experience. You don't and won't have any such, which will undermine your chances to move up.

As for the money issue, nice straw man, but sorry. It's not about buying a qualification. Recall my position on TN? The point is the notion of value. You obviously believe an American license has value, but to the extent it does, it's because such things are not just handed out like candy on Halloween. It's because they demand substantial time and cost from people that their supply is constrained, and why parents in many countries are willing to pay large amount of money for schools that have staff with them. If any random human being around the planet can lay their hands on an American license, or QTS, or whatever, then by definition those things will decline in value (as the DC license already has) and eventually some other thing will arise as a means to demonstrate true teaching capability.

Personally, as I work in a terrible school by IS standards, if I had 9 years experience at good IB schools...well, let's just say I'm envious of you, haha.

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