How to Become a PE Teacher in South Carolina

In order to become a Physical Education (PE) teacher in South Carolina, you'll need a degree and experience in student teaching. You will also be required to take specific tests. This article explains all these requirements and how to fulfill them.

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Physical Education (PE) teachers work with students in a very active way outside of the regular classrooms. PE educators in South Carolina teach students from kindergarten through the 12th grade and are expected to let their students partake in specified amounts of physical activity per week. This article elaborates on the paths to becoming a teacher in South Carolina.

Key Information For PE Teachers In South Carolina

Mean Yearly Salary (2017)* $50,510 (Elementary School), $52,400 (Middle School), $53,960 (Secondary School)
Required Degree Bachelor's Degree
Degree Field Health, Fitness
Testing Requirements Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA)
Praxis Performance Assessment for Teachers (PPAT)
Praxis Examination in Physical Education: Content and Design (5095)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Complete Educational Requirements

The road to becoming a certified PE teacher starts with an appropriate bachelor's or master's degree and completion of an educator/teacher preparation program. The educator/teacher preparation programs will generally be comprised of candidates' coursework, supervised student teaching, and clinical practice. Students who want to teach PE in South Carolina can choose a degree program at an institution that also offers a state-approved educator preparation program and is accredited by a regional accreditation association. Other options are a degree from an in-state school with educator preparation programs approved by the State Board of Education (SBE) or by a national accreditation association that has a partnership agreement with the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE). An alternative route accepted by the state is to complete the educator preparation program through a third party called Teachers of Tomorrow.

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Step 2: Pass Qualifying Exams

In addition to a degree and completing the educator preparation program, aspiring teachers in South Carolina must also be able to present qualifying scores on teacher-area examinations adopted by the SBE. These are comprised of both general professional knowledge (pedagogy) scores and content knowledge/subject-area scores.

In South Carolina, the following pedagogy assessments are approved for certification purposes:

  • Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA). The qualifying score is:
    • Reading: qualifying score of 156.
    • Writing: qualifying score of 158.
    • Mathematics: qualifying score of 142.
  • Praxis Performance Assessment for Teachers (PPAT).
    • The qualifying score is 36.
  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT).
    • Grades K-6: qualifying score of 160.
    • Grades 7-12: qualifying score of 157.

A student must complete the edTPA and PPAT while performing student teaching as part of an approved educator preparation program.

For assessing PE content knowledge/subject area scores, South Carolina adopted the Physical Education: Content and Design test (test code 5095) with a qualifying score of 169.

Step 3: Apply For Certification

All aspiring teachers will have to apply for initial certification on the website of South Carolina's Department of Education. They need to submit an application form; a recommendation form; college transcripts; examination scores; and experience verification. Applicants will also undergo both a state and a national criminal records check including fingerprinting (done by, respectively, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation).

Resources For Aspiring PE Teachers

Study.com has numerous courses available that can assist in becoming a PE teacher. See the following helpful resources:

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