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Texas School Leader Certification

Requirements for obtaining the principal and superintendent certificates are prescribed by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). State certification for Texas school administrators consists of three types: full, intern, and probationary. Full certification is sought by candidates who have successfully completed their respective certification programs. Intern and probationary certification may be obtained only in special cases where candidates are contractually employed in an administrative position prior to their completion of their certification programs, the director of the West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) program recommends the candidate for intern or probationary certification, and TEA grants the temporary certificate. For more detailed information about Texas certification, refer to the Educator Certification webpage on the TEA website. The university directors for guidance on the school leader certification processes at WTAMU are Dr. Ray Barbosa for principal certification and Dr. Gary Bigham for superintendent certification.

Full Certification

The steps to full certification include the following:

Number 1 embedded in circleFinish Coursework

Completion of coursework and associated field experiences (practicum) as prescribed on an approved degree or certification plan. The coursework and practicums have been carefully designed to promote success on the master's comprehensive exam for degree-seeking candidates, the licensure exams for certification-seeking candidates, and for success in leadership roles in the profession of education.

 

GNumber 2 embedded in circleraduate

The graduation requirement applies only to degree-seeking candidates. Eligibility for the M.Ed. in Educational Leadership hinges on successfully completing all course and practicum requirements and passing the master's comprehensive exam. Certification only candidates entered their certification program with an earned master's degree and are not required to pass a master's comprehensive exam. 

 

Number 3 embedded in a circleCertify

State certification is granted by the Texas Education Agency once a candidate has fulfilled the requirements for becoming a principal or superintendent in Texas. After completion of the appropriate certification program (which may or may not include the conferral of a degree), the candidate must pass the required Texas Examination of Educator Standards (TExES) for the desired area of certification. There are four steps in this process:

a. Take the Practice TExES

The WTAMU Education Testing Service administers the practice TExES monthly. Register for and take the practice TExES as applicable to the certification you are seeking per guidance from your adviser.

b. Attend a TExES Review Session

TExES review sessions are conducted each semester by program faculty. Review sessions should be attended at the end of your certification program.

c. Test Take the TExES

Following your attendance at a test review session and upon approval of your adviser, you will register for and take the TExES for the certification you are seeking. This is a two step process as follows:

1). Complete Part 1 of the Request for TExES Approval form and email it to your adviser.

2). Upon notification of approval from the certification office, register for the appropriate exam on the TExES website.

d. Add Credential to Texas Educator Certificate

Complete the following steps:

1). Login to your TEAL account on the TEA website.

2). Verify/update your Educator Profile.

3). Choose “Applications” then click on “Standard Certificate Texas Program.” 

4). Follow the instructions to apply for your standard certificate.  Choose WTAMU (University Based) option as entity route.

5). Submit the appropriate fee to TEA.

6). Download and complete Part 1 of the Certification Application Recommendation, email it to your adviser who will verify, sign, and send to the certification officer. (Note: Confirmation of a Master’s Degree and date on an official transcript is required before WTAMU can recommend you for certification).

TEA approves applications within 5 days of receiving them and the WTAMU certification office processes applications on Monday of each week. TEA approval must be granted before the WTAMU certification office may recommend approval.

 In your email correspondence with the WTAMU certification office, always include the following:

  • Your TEA ID
  • Date of Master’s Degree (mm/dd/yyyy) that is verified on an official transcript
  • Number of years of teaching experience
  • Date TExES was passed
  • Number of attempts required to pass TExES (number of times you took the TExES)

Temporary Certification

Occasionally, candidates find themselves in need of certification prior to completing their certification program. Upon recommendation by the appropriate Educational Leadership program director, intern or probationary certification may be recommended to the university's certification office and the Texas Education Agency for candidates currently enrolled in a principal or superintendent certification program and employed in a professional position requiring principal or superintendent certification. Once approved by TEA, temporary certification is equivalent to full certification, but with time restrictions. If an educational leadership candidate is in need of intern or probationary certification s/he should contact the designated program director to discuss eligibility. Once eligibility has been established, the candidate will complete the requirements. The rules for intern and probationary certificates are prescribed in 19 TAC §230.36 and 19 TAC §230.37 respectively.

 

Note: Requirements for licensure/certification vary from state to state. Our programs prepare candidates for certification and/or licensure in the State of Texas. We do not represent that our programs prepare candidates for licensure or certification in other states.