Educators who are considering receiving a national board certification for teachers can do so close to home and with an instructor who might be a familiar face.
West Virginia Wesleyan's National Board Certification for Teachers course will meet from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. one Saturday each month.
Instructor Edwina Howard-Jack said, on average, the certification can be achieved in three years, and there are many benefits to taking the course and eventually achieving national certification. Teachers who are nationally certified can teach in any state without receiving a state certification and can receive pay increases. Also, the Wesleyan class counts as three credit hours toward a master's degree.
"It is the best professional development I've been a part of," Howard-Jack said. "National board certification is highly respected and can provide many opportunities."
Although the class began Aug. 25, anyone who would like to enroll still can do so. Howard-Jack will work with anyone who could not attend the first class, but is able to attend the future classes.
The course provides support as educators move through the rigorous process of preparing portfolios and eventually taking the certification test.
Prerequisites are the individual must hold a bachelor's degree, have three or more years of full-time teaching or counseling experience and have a valid West Virginia teaching license. Those interested in the program can contact Lynn Rupp, director of the school of education, at 304-473-8028.
Before joining the staff at Wesleyan as an assistant professor of education, Howard-Jack taught in Upshur and Randolph counties. She obtained her undergraduate degree in English and secondary education from Wesleyan; earned a master's in special education from West Virginia University; and is currently working toward a doctorate from WVU. She is also national board certified in English and served as the English and language arts coordinator at the West Virginia Department of Education.