personal learning

VSTE 2016: ISTE-T Certification

I’m always looking for a next possible step in my career, and I’d been stuck. Becoming an ITRT was the next step, but there really was no certification to do so; VA doesn’t require it like WV does. That means I end up competing with all sorts of folks. Competition isn’t bad, but I want to find ways to make myself a better ITRT and stand out in my field. Turns out, I found my next step at VSTE- ISTE-T Certification.

The ISTE-T program is tied to ISTE standards and is a rigorous program that shows you know the standards and how they are applicable in today’s classroom and schools. It’s meant for those who have been teaching for some time, and is self-guided. There is a 12 month period to complete all of the required work. The cost is actually pretty doable, and I’m pretty sure I can get all of it/most of it compensated by my district as well, which is even better.

I can apply at any time by submitting a lesson plan to demonstrate my current level of technology use in the classroom. I have a few to work with and will probably tweak one more in the future. The best time to start the program is October 1 – April 1. They don’t like you to start during summer break and immediately lose 3 months due to summer vacation and they also don’t like you to start during September when school is starting. Based on that, I would want to start the program next November since I’m getting married in October. I don’t want to have to deal with coursework and plan for a wedding at the same time, especially not the final bits.

During the session, we had a chance to practice getting things ready for submission by providing possible documentation that we already had for some of the standards. We can double-dip as well. That’s certainly helpful. I know there are definitely standards that I’ll be working toward creating things for, and working my hardest so I get good feedback on my work.

The group at the session was very small, and some folks left in the middle because it wasn’t right for them for one reason or another. It is meant to be a very rigorous program and isn’t meant for someone just starting out in teaching. It’s a nice goal to look forward to though.

I feel like this will be a good challenge for me, and really put my skills to the test. I want to keep challenging myself, and it has been a little bit since I committed myself to a work heavy program, the last one being the TIS cohort. I’m ready for the next thing, and it’ll help me out if I decide to switch positions and move as well. Unlike the TIS certification, this one will be recognized for its rigor and prestige no matter where I ended up living.

Now I just have to prepare for next November and get anything together that I plan to use already. I can use whatever I have, as long as it’s been done in the past 2 years. I’m ready to advance!