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Teaching with an Associate's Degree

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Question:
Is it possible to get a teaching certificate if I only have an associate's degree in childcare and development? Could I substitute teach with this degree? Also, do you need a teaching certificate to become a preschool teacher?

Answer:
To earn a teaching certificate, you'll need to complete a bachelor's degree in teaching. In fulfilling requirements for the teacher certification program, you'll take all necessary education classes and undertake at least one full semester of student-teaching to meet certification requirements. All public schools in the U.S. require teachers to hold teacher certifications. K-12 private schools don't always require teachers to be certified, although they usually require the minimum completion of a bachelor's degree.

Eligibility requirements to substitute teach in a K-12 public school vary by school district. While some districts will allow non-BA-holders to substitute teach, many of require that their subs continue working toward their bachelor's degree. Other districts require subs to already hold a bachelor's degree, while others require teaching certifications.

It's rare for district to require teaching certifications for a preschool teacher. An exception might be when the preschool is part of a public school district, but this is not always the case. Your associate's degree in childcare and development should make you eligible for preschool teaching jobs. There's a high demand for preschool teachers, so your chances for finding work should be good. There's a particular demand for these professionals at the moment.

Good luck!

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