How to Become a High School Teacher in Georgia

Mar 08, 2018

Teaching high school is an interesting and rewarding career for those interested in working with and educating children. With a broad range of subjects to explore, a teacher can follow their passion and share their knowledge with future generations. This article outlines a clear path to becoming a high school teacher in the state of Georgia.

High school teachers in Georgia instruct students from sixth to twelfth grade. Those interested in becoming a high school teacher can follow several paths to employment. In this article, we discuss the traditional path, Pathway 1, which involves earning a bachelor's degree, completing an educator preparation program, and passing Georgia state licensing exams.

Georgia High School Teaching Requirements

Average Salary for High School Teachers in Georgia (2016)* $56,420
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Area of interest (Science, Mathematics, English, etc.) and an approved educator preparation program
Testing Requirements Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE) in area of interest, GACE Program Admission Assessments (Reading, Mathematics, and Writing), and the Georgia Educator Ethics Assessment - Program Exit; edTPA

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Earn a Degree and Complete a Teacher Preparation Program

To be considered for licensure in Georgia, aspiring high school teachers will need to complete a bachelor's degree and educator preparation program through a college or university approved by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC). These programs typically include teaching and co-teaching experience in a classroom in addition to instruction on selecting and implementing subject-specific lesson plans and methods for teaching in diverse settings. Future high school teachers must also complete a course in how to identify and educate exceptional children.

Step 2: Pass the Required Examinations

Prior to entering a teacher preparation program, students will need to pass the GACE Program Admission Assessments in Reading (test code 200), Mathematics (test code 201), and Writing (test code 202). Please note, it is possible to be granted an exemption from one or more of these tests if a candidate has earned qualifying scores on the SAT (1000 Verbal/Critical Reading and Math), ACT (43 English and Math), or GRE (297 Verbal and Quantitative).

After completing the teacher preparation program, candidates for educator licensing in Georgia must then earn a passing score on the following exams:

  • GACE Content Assessment in their instructional area (passing score is 220 or above); some examples include:
    • Art, grades P-12 (test code 109, 110)
    • Biology, grades 6-12 (test code 026, 027)
    • Business Education, grades 6-12 (test code 042, 043)
    • Computer Science, grades P-12 (test code 554)
    • Economics, grades 6-12 (test code 038, 039)
    • English, grades 6-12 (test code 020, 021)
    • Health and Physical Education, grades P-12 (test code 115, 116)
    • History, grades 6-12 (test code 034, 035)
    • Mathematics, grades 6-12 (test code 022, 023)
    • Physics, grades 6-12 (test code 030, 031)
  • Georgia Educator Ethics Assessment - Program Exit (test code 360)
  • edTPA in their instructional area (passing scores range from 32-38)

Step 3: Apply for an Induction Certificate

Once a candidate has completed their educator training program and passed the necessary exams, they may then apply for an induction certificate from the GaPSC. The certificate will be valid for three years, and may then be converted to a professional certificate. A teacher must work within their chosen instruction subject during that three-year period and receive satisfactory annual evaluations to be eligible to convert to a professional certificate upon expiration.

Georgia High School Teacher Certification Resources

Preparing for the GACE exams is the key to success for prospective high school teachers pursuing certification in the state of Georgia. Please follow the links below to find the tools you need to get started.

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