How to Become a Certified Principal in Texas
The iteach Principal Certification program is designed to prepare you for a successful career as a school administrator. During your experience as a teacher, you learned principals play a critical role in setting a positive tone for their schools. It’s your opportunity to impact students on a much broader scale, to make a difference in public education. iteach is a state-approved route to earning a Texas Principal Certificate.
Texas allows experienced teachers who have a master’s degree to pursue principal certification.
The steps to earning principal certification are:
- Enroll in an accredited certification program and complete the program’s state-approved coursework.
- Pass the TExES Principal test.
- Complete a successful field experience.
iteach is accredited by the Texas Education Agency as an alternative route to principal certification. We offer the distinct advantage of a distance-based curriculum that allows working teachers to transition into principal positions with minimal interruption to their current jobs.
Principal Application Process
Step 1. Complete the online application form.
You must pay the evaluation fee before your file will be evaluated for program admission.
Step 2. Mail your supplemental admissions materials to the iteachTEXAS office.
You must provide:
- Two letters of recommendation, both from current administrators. One of the two letters must be from your direct supervising administrator. Letters must be on school letterhead.
- A writing sample which will be scored by the iteachTEXAS Admissions staff. This will be a 200-300 word response to the statement: “I believe I can assist our schools in meeting future challenges by…”
- An official state service record indicating the number of years you have taught.
- A copy of your current Standard Teaching Certificate.
- Official transcripts. Your will need to submit a transcript reflecting your conferred bachelor’s degree and master’s degree
All submitted admission materials are the property of the program and will not be returned to you. All submitted documentation must be current.
iteachTEXAS requires official transcripts for program admission. It is your responsibility to request transcripts from all the institutions you have attended. If you already have official transcripts with the university watermark, seal, or other proof of official status, you may mail them to iteachTEXAS even if they have been opened. Mail all application materials to:
ATTN: Principal Certification
P.O. Box 1626
Denton, Texas 76202
You may send official electronic transcripts via SCRIP-SAFE or other secure electronic transcript provider to firstname.lastname@example.org. If the electronic transcript provider requires the transcript to be sent with attention to a specific person, please list First Name: “Admissions” Last Name: “iteach” in these fields.
iteachTEXAS does not request transcripts, service records, or letters of recommendation on your behalf. Failure to provide iteachTEXAS with these documents will delay the evaluation of your application.
Applications are retained for six months. If you do not submit a completed packet within six months, the application is destroyed to ensure the security of your personal information.
Step 3. Track your application’s progress via the instructNET platform.
You will receive login information via email after you submit your electronic application.
Step 4. Receiving notification of your program status via e-mail. Upon acceptance into the program, you gain access to the Letter of Agreement (LOA).
Completed application packets are retained for six months. If you do not acknowledge the Letter of Agreement and/or pay the non-refundable access fee within six months, your packet is destroyed to ensure the security of your personal information.
Step 5. Enroll in the program.
Within a week from the time you acknowledge the Letter of Agreement, pay the non-refundable access fee and return the Personal Payment Authorization form, you receive:
- An official Letter of Acceptance
- Access to the introductory course, IPAC 1000
- A Statement of Eligibility, a form that you provide to school districts at the time of a job application to indicate eligibility for a field experience position and a Probationary Principal Certificate
Once accepted into the program, you have three complete school years in which to complete all of the program requirements, including the one-year (two-semester) field experience.
Principal Admission Requirements
Prospective principals who wish to apply to the iteachTEXAS program must:
- Be currently employed as a teacher or currently employed as a principal or vice principal, in a full time position, at a TEA approved school
- Hold a valid Texas Standard Teaching Certificate
- Have two years of documented, creditable teaching in a TEA approved/recognized school as shown in the candidate’s Texas service record
- Hold a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
- Have a GPA of at least 3.00 in master’s program
- Have a valid e-mail account
- Provide writing sample responding to this prompt: “I believe I can assist our schools in meeting future challenges by…” This must be included in your application packet and is an important part of the application process. The response will be evaluated for grammar and content.
Attn: Principal Certification
P.O. Box 1626
Denton, TX 76202
Applicants must also:
- Have a personal e-mail account and access to a personal (not school) computer.
- Add iteach.net to your contacts list.
- Demonstrate professionalism during all written correspondence and oral communication with iteachTEXAS.
Review of Certification Standing
iteachTEXAS will review your TEA account and take the following into consideration when evaluating for admission:
- Previous Educator Preparation Program participation
- Certification testing record
Principal Certification Coursework
iteachTEXAS offers eight online instructional courses that are designed to equip you to be an outstanding principal. The courses are self-paced; however, you are required to complete the courses within 12 months of enrolling in the iteach program. You will gain access to the iteachTEXAS Principal Certification coursework immediately after enrolling in the program.
Experienced school administrators wrote the courses to be useful and practical so that you may refer to often them during your career as a principal. Each course is taken in sequence; you cannot begin your next course until your current one is complete.
IPAC 1000 – Introduction to Certification
IPAC 1001 – Critical Issues in Education
IPAC 1002 – Human Resources, Leadership and Management
IPAC 1003 – Educational Politics and Legal Policy
IPAC 1004 – Curriculum Design and Practice
IPAC 1005 – The Principal as the Instructional Leader
IPAC 1006 – The Role of Professional Development in Education
IPAC 1007 – Education Finance and Budgeting
IPAC 1008 – Comprehensive Review
Field Experience Courses
IPAC 2000 – Field Experience
While the iteachTEXAS Principal coursework is self-paced, the eight instructional courses, IPAC 1000-IPAC 1007, are designed to be completed within a 12-month time span. You are progressed no faster than one course per 10 days. Each of the instructional courses is designed to require a minimum of 45 seat hours. If you are required to repeat a course or elect to take a month off during the instruction, these needs can be accommodated within the 12-month timeline.
The review and field experience courses are not included in the 12-month timeline.
If you do not complete the final instructional course within 12 months from being enrolled into IPAC 1001, you may request permission to be reenrolled in the courses for a six-month period with the payment of a renewal access fee.
Principal Field Experience
OPTION 1: INTERNSHIP
With this option, you will complete a one-year (two-semester) paid internship as a hired principal or assistant principal at a TEA-recognized school. You must secure your own internship position through the district application/interview process.
If you elect this option, your hiring district must provide a completed Statement of Eligibility reflecting your new position to iteachTEXAS as soon as you are hired as a campus administrator. You may apply for a Probationary Principal Certificate upon obtaining a qualifying position.
OPTION 2: CLINICAL PLACEMENT
With this option, you complete your field experience by shadowing a current who is certified; you are required to complete 160 hours of documented participation over one semester. You will need to have authorized release time from your hiring district to participate in this option.
If you elect this option, your school district must provide iteachTEXAS with a completed Statement of Eligibility reflecting your release time and your responsibilities during the shadowing period. The district commitment will be considered by the iteach Review Committee to determine appropriateness of field experience. The 160 hours of the internship may be acquired through observation of various aspects of the principal’s responsibilities.
The required 160 hours may be acquired in the following areas:
• 24 Hours (15%) night/weekend extracurricular activities
• 52 Hours (33%) summer duties
• 83 Hours (52%) school day activities – can be accomplished during lunch/conference
In both the internship and clinical placement, you are assigned a field supervisor who is an experienced school administrator. You must provide your personal payment plan form to iteachTEXAS prior to beginning your field experience.
Principal Certification Pricing
TOTAL COST OF PROGRAM
This is the anticipated cost for a candidate who completes all iteachTEXAS program requirements according to the program timeline. The total cost is broken down into the following fees:
TO GET STARTED
|Total to Start Today||$500.00|
|Online Course Instruction Participation.
|Field Experience Fee||$1,000.00|
|Total Deferred Fees||$4,500.00|
Instructional Renewal Fee
If you do not complete the instructional courses within the 12-month time frame, you must pay an instructional renewal fee of $400.00. If continuation is approved, you will be given six additional months to complete your coursework.
You have the following options for payment of fees:
- Sign a personal payment plan indicating monthly payments made directly to iteachTEXAS once field experience is obtained.
- Pay for the instruction as you are participating in the course work and then pay for field experience once you obtain a field experience position.
- You will be making monthly payments as you progress through the Principal Certification Program.
You will not receive access to IPAC 1001 until you have submitted personal payment information and started making payments towards your instructional fee.
All program fees are non-refundable.
Additional Fees Not Covered by iteachTEXAS
|Probationary Certificate Application Fee||$52.00|
|TExES Principal Examination (cost per exam)||$120.00|
|Standard Certificate Application Fee||$77.00|
Principal Certification F.A.Qs
Q. When can I apply?
A. You may apply at any time; iteachTEXAS does not have any application deadlines.
Q. Do I have to request transcripts or does iteachTEXAS request them for me?
It is your responsibility to request that your transcripts be sent to iteachTEXAS; iteachTEXAS does not request transcripts on your behalf. If you already have official transcripts, you may mail them directly to iteachTEXAS. Send transcripts to:
P.O. Box 1626
Denton, Texas 76202
Q. Where do I mail my transcripts?
Mail your transcripts and other application materials to:
P.O. Box 1626
Denton, Texas 76202
Q. How much does the program cost?
A. The total program cost is $5,000.
Q. How much do I pay to get started?
$500; you can begin the iteachTEXAS program with a $75 Evaluation Fee and a $425 Program Access Fee. All other fees ($4,500) are deferred, interest-free, until you begin your Field Experience position.
After the upfront cost, there are two payment fees remaining: The Instructional Coursework Fee, $3500.00 and Field Experience Fee, $1000.00.
To access your Statement of Eligibility, you acknowledge a Personal Payment Plan for the Field Experience Fee $1000.00 (and any outstanding balance) to be paid during your Field Experience. You are only assessed the Field Experience fee if and when you begin your Field Experience.
To be enrolled into IPAC1001, you must acknowledge a Personal Payment Plan for the Instructional Coursework Fee of $3500.00 to be paid in equal monthly installments over a seven month time period. The Instructional Coursework Personal Payment Plan is located on your homepage of IPAC1000. This form can be scanned and emailed or faxed, 940-383-8131.
Some candidates will enroll into iteachTEXAS and not make payments until they secure a Field Experience. The candidate will complete their Field Experience and Instructional Coursework at the same time, making payments over the duration of their Field Experience.
Some candidates will select to complete all coursework (paying for the coursework over seven months) and then after the Principal Certification Test is passed, look to secure a Field Experience. The Instructional Fee is paid during the coursework completion and then the Field Experience Fee is paid once a Field Experience is secured.
A third option would be to begin coursework and begin your Field Experience at some time during the coursework. In this option, candidates make payments toward their Instructional Fee and when a Field Experience is secured, the entire outstanding balance is paid in monthly payments once the Field Experience begins.
Q. Can I use financial aid?
A. No, iteachTEXAS is not an institution of higher education. Therefore, the program does not qualify for financial aid.
Q. How long does the program take?
A. You must complete your instructional coursework within twelve months. The whole iteachTEXAS program is designed to be completed within one school year, but you have two full school years to find start your field experience while enrolled in the iteachTEXAS program.
Q. How do I log in?
A. Please click on the Login button at the top right corner of the page, or click here.