New revisions to New York's Teacher Certification Requirements

ROCHESTER, N.Y. - "I know people say it's an upcoming teacher shortage - it's not, it's here right now," said Debbi Jackett, a teacher at School 17 in  says RCSD is struggling with a shortage of teachers.

However, that's not just a problem in Rochester. The State's Education Department says New York is facing a shortage of qualified teachers in specific subject areas meaning they  are hiring per-diem subs that might not have the qualifications.

"In my school right now we have probably 4 or 5 bilingual teachers that are not certified as teachers," she added. 

This issue, just one of the major reasons the Board of Regents took to revising Teacher Certification Requirements.

"I think it's a smart move," said Adam Urbanski, President of the Rochester Teachers Association. 

Urbanski agrees with the Board of Regents plan, which makes it easier for candidates to pass, but maintains the state's rigorous standards.

"And it might help us to be better prepared to attract our portion of teachers needed in New York State," he added. 

There are three main revisions to New York's Teacher Certification requirements: 

First: is streamlining the process - making it easier overall to pass the exam and become certified to teach.

Second: lowering the passing test score from 41 to 40

and Third: providing a safety net if the candidate gets a score two points lower than 40.

"If you fail the initial exam, there are other kinds of tests that would substitute for that , that are equivalent," added Urbanski. 

The new revisions also include: if the candidate does not pass the first time, in order to take the test again:

They must have a 3.0 GPA and must pass all other exams required. 

Public comments on the regulations changes will be accepted through November 13th and the revisions are anticipated to become effective on December 27th, 2017.

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