Texas Art Teacher Certification and Job Requirements

The State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) is the organization that develops the standards for all educators in Texas. The standards set encompass all of the ideas surrounding the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), which are the required school curriculum in Texas. The certification for teachers in Texas certifies that all teachers are highly educated and able to carry out these standards in the classroom.

As a new art teacher in Texas, you will learn about research regarding how children learn and develop as it pertains to art. Integration with other core classes is beginning to bring art into the light. As you seek to become an art teacher and you will discover how art can be a key component to a well-rounded education for all your students; here’s the steps to get you started:

Enroll in a Teacher Preparation Program
Take Competency Exams
Apply for State Certification
Continue Your Education

 


 

Step 1. Enroll in a Teacher Preparation Program

The very first step on your way to becoming an art teacher in Texas will be an educational training program that will prepare you to teach in the classroom. Recently schools have been looking for highly qualified educators and are evaluated based on their performance. In order to prepare you for your new career, you have several options to choose from.

Here are some pathways you may consider:

Alternative Certification Educational Program

There is a nontraditional route for students who already hold a degree. If you have a bachelor’s degree or higher and you have other outside experiences in art, including mentoring or supervising, you may qualify for an Alternative Certification Program.

This option allows you to teach for one school year on a probationary certificate. You receive full-time pay as well as teacher benefits. When you have completed the program you are ready for a Standard Certification. These programs offer mentoring while you are completing your internship.

University Initial Certification

This pathway is the one that is most common. It includes a baccalaureate or master’s program and a student teaching component towards the end. The coursework involved in your program will vary depending on which level of school you plan on teaching.

For instance for a degree in secondary art education your program will look similar to the following:

120 semester hours including:

  • 6 hours student teaching
  • 60 hours core curriculum
  • 3 hours reading
  • 12 hours of pedagogy inc.:
    • Professional Issues for Teachers
    • Teaching and Learning Processes
    • Teaching Diverse Populations
    • Instructional Strategies
    • Classroom Management

 


 

Step 2. Take Competency Exams

When you first choose your educational path, you might need to take a basic skills test for pre-admission. You can discuss this with your counselor when you sign up for your degree program to see if there are any necessary test prerequisites. The teaching programs typically require the following:

Pre-Admission Content Test (PACT)

Note: New policy changes that went into effect in 2013 stated the if you hold a bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited school, or if you will receive your bachelor’s degree before going into a classroom position, you are able to take a content test for purposes of admission into the following types of EPPs: alternative certification programs, university alternative certification or university post bachelor’s degree programs. You won’t be able to be in a class as the teacher of record under until you graduate with your bachelor’s degree.

Generalists Tests (Core Subject after 2015)

This test is required for all teachers and will evaluate your basic skills in reading, writing, and English. Each test question can include selected response or constructed questions or a combination of both.

Art Test

This test will prove your skills in your core subject area. As an art teacher, you will be required to take one or both of the following depending on your subject and/or grade level:

  • Fine Arts 805
  • Art EC-12 178

Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12

This test will evaluate whether or not you, as a beginning teacher, understand your profession and the role you play in the classroom as an educator. You will be tested on subjects that cover the classroom environment as well as your professional roles and responsibilities as a teacher. You will also be tested on how well you understand the process of promoting student learning.

Important things to know about the tests:

  • You may complete your registration for TExES tests either online or on the phone.
  • Call 1-800-205-2626 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Central time- Monday–Friday (not open on holidays).
  • Use your exact legal name on your identification when you register. They must match exactly otherwise you won’t be admitted when you go to the testing center.
  • Be sure to print out and bring your admission ticket with you on the day of the test.
  • Print your admission ticket from the ETS website.
  • Basic test fee is $120.00 per test.

 


 

Step 3. Apply for State Certification

The initial certification you will receive is the Standard Certification in Texas once you have met the educational requirement and passed your exams. The certificate will expire at varying times depending on when you received it. All standard certificates in Texas expire on the same date.

To apply for your Standard certification you will need to create an online account through the Educator Certification Online System (ECOS). You will need to follow the prompts and be prepared to fill in all of your personal information including social security number and driver’s license number.

Fingerprinting

You will need to submit your fingerprints using a Texas Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) approved vendor: MorphoTrust.

  • Pay $39.50 for your criminal background check. You will be able to make this payment through the ECOS.
  • Once you have made your payment of $39.50, you will receive a FAST Fingerprint Pass. You can then schedule an appointment to get your fingerprints taken. You must have this pass with you and your ID.
  • There is an additional $9.95 fee for the scan when you are done. They will charge you at the MorphoTrust location.
  • The TEA will have your prints in 5-7 days.

 


 

Step 4. Continue Your Education

In order to renew your certificate, you will have to complete at least 150 units of continuing professional education before you can renew. Your school will oftentimes offer professional development seminars on weekends and after school hours that will apply towards these units. You may also find online educational courses that apply. Check with your school district office as well. They will usually have a list of approved vendors that offer courses and many times pay for the fees so that your cost is either offset or free.

If you want to earn credits from a formal institution so that it goes toward a higher degree, you may consider pursuing a graduate degree. Often times doing so will increase your future opportunities for advancement both in earnings over your lifetime as well as other additional benefits.

 



 


Texas Art Teacher Salaries

According to the National Education Association, the average starting salary for teachers in Texas (as of the 2012-2013 school year) is $38,091, somewhat higher than the national average of $36,141.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide data on art teacher salaries as a separate unit, but tracks salaries for elementary, middle, and secondary school teachers as larger categories. The department reports the following annual mean wages and employment numbers as of May 2013:

Occupation Title EmploymentMean Annual Salary
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education142,69050,290
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education71,64050,860
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education100,50051,850

However, teacher salaries can vary significantly by location. A sample of the median salaries and employment figures as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for some major cities appears below (note that not all areas track all categories):

Occupation Title EmploymentMean Annual Salary
Abilene, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,01044,370
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education43046,620
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education70045,800
 
Amarillo, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,63047,740
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education67047,110
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education99050,190
 
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education9,34047,210
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education4,46048,270
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education6,75048,860
 
Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education2,05047,960
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,12047,680
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,54048,280
 
Brownsville-Harlingen, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education2,67048,120
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,51050,240
 
College Station-Bryan, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,14046,390
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education54046,640
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education67045,770
 
Corpus Christi, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,92056,760
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,03057,120
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,64054,290
 
Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX Metropolitan Division
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education23,32051,990
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education12,45052,530
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education17,38053,590
 
El Paso, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education5,05051,200
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education2,17051,080
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education3,94051,660

 

Fort Worth-Arlington, TX Metropolitan Division
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education11,25052,850
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education5,82053,820
 
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education34,47051,850
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education16,89051,730
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education21,90053,110
 
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education2,27050,450
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,13050,090
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,36050,920
 
Longview, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,02044,580
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education51045,710
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,04047,920
 
Lubbock, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,87044,480
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education77044,550
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education1,18046,710
 
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education6,26049,280
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education2,86051,220
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education4,02052,380
 
Midland, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education90048,990
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education43050,760
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education55053,670
 
Odessa, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education800Data not available
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education34048,930
Special Education Teachers, Kindergarten and Elementary School9046,780
 
San Angelo, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special EducationNot available49,160
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical EducationNot available49,880
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education43050,310
 
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education12,38055,390
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education5,78055,940
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education7,58056,530
 
Sherman-Denison, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education64046,630
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education38047,880
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education54050,480
 
Texarkana-Texarkana, TX-AR
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education46044,650
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education53047,690
 
Tyler, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,09044,430
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education62043,730
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education89047,130
 
Victoria, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education57044,910
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education12047,710
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education55049,140
 
Waco, TX
Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education1,17044,890
Middle School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education68045,230
Secondary School Teachers, Except Special and Career/Technical Education95046,620

The statewide minimum salary schedule for the 2014-2015 school year is below:

Years of Experience Credited
Monthly Salary
Years of Experience Credited
0
2754
11
1
2813
12
2
2872
13
3
2931
14
4
3056
15
5
3181
16
6
3306
17
7
3422
18
8
3532
19
9
3636
20 & Over
10
3734

Information on postsecondary art, music, and drama teacher salaries in various areas of the state can be found in the following table provided by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Area Name
Employment
Annual Median Salary
Abilene TX
120
55370
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos TX
680
61890
Corpus Christi TX
110
54950
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington TX
1120
57090
Dallas-Plano-Irving TX Metropolitan Division
660
60140
El Paso TX
130
60340
Fort Worth-Arlington TX Metropolitan Division
450
53260
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown TX
830
63200
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood TX
80
57170
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission TX
100
52660
San Antonio-New Braunfels TX
590
38250
Tyler TX
80
Estimate Not Released
Northwestern Texas nonmetropolitan area
100
46690
North Central Texas nonmetropolitan area
110
45460
Eastern Texas nonmetropolitan area
90
58370
Gulf Coast Texas nonmetropolitan area
160
61140

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