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Questions -



I'm wondering, if I am correct the teaching certificate for
Texas for EC-4 use to be a life time cetificate, and it is
now not, so how long is it good for?
How many hours are you required to obtain per year to keep
your certificate current?
How much time do you really have off in the summer?

I am tired of working 8 hrs a day 5 days a week all year
long, I feel like I'm missing out on time I could be
spending with my children. If I change my career to
teaching will it allow me more time with my family? If not
Why? I hear that teachers get upset when they hear that
people think they have summers off, so I am assuming they
don't, so what is it that is done during the summer, and
for those who say they arrive at school at 7 am and leave
at 7 pm, is it because they are un-orgainzed or is there
really that much work to be done? What type of work is it
that is done that keeps you there so long?

I just want to be able to make an informed decision before
I change my career. Thanks for any advice.


New Member
As I'm not from TX, I can't answer the question regarding the certification.

However, regarding the schedule questions: teaching is different from a clocked job - or should be. When you mention organization, that's definitely a key practicality to be established when you begin teaching! Routines for kids, for grading, for planning, etc., will all be essential, especially with needing to spend time with children.

Yet, even with routines in place, teaching has the tendency to take over your life. There's no concrete end to searching for one better method to make the math lesson comprehensible, developing a technique for Suzy who struggles sounding out words, or thinking about a discipline issue with Bobby. Finding resources, making copies, developing/writing-out plans, grading, necessary talks with colleagues, parent communication, developing worksheets when what you want can't be found elsewhere, organizing the classroom (including all the little things that add up like sharpening pencils, changing the calendar, writing a morning message, bulletin boards, etc.), and paperwork, paperwork, paperwork . . . they all swallow up time.

On the other hand, even for those who work 7-to-7 (which at times has included myself, so I can speak!), it's not ultimately a healthy decision. As you would know being a mom, it's best to look at working with children as a long-term race vs. a sprint -- take care of oneself even though going a bit slower in the beginning, because going too hard or too fast won't help a person last as long. Since you have a family to whom you are committed, you'll likely have a structure in place so that you leave school in a timely manner and get home to spend time with family and at the same time rest yourself. :)

Summers - Summers are often busy with professional development and looking-ahead to the next school year with planning. Some teachers are also involved in teaching summer school. It can be somewhat relaxed, but probably still somewhat busy for newer teachers.

Can I offer one word of encouragement, as well? Your concern to spend time with your kids is an indication that you care about more than just a job or academics, but about relationships. We could practically live at school, spending loads of time planning, but if we don't love the individual children it's mostly for naught. On the other hand, if we truly love each student for the individual he/she is, then our hard-worked day will be fruitful, even if not perfectionistically performed. :)

Tchr from TX

Texas Certification

The Texas teacher certifications last for 5 years. (They were lifetime certifications not too long ago.) To keep your certification, you need to have 150 hours of continuing professional education every 5 years. I hope you find what you are looking for!