Schools in Michigan with Teacher Leader Programs

Oct 02, 2019

If you're an experienced teacher in Michigan, you may be considering enrolling in a Teacher Leader program to help progress in your career. Completion of a Teacher Leader program is a requirement in order to obtain an Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate, which can help demonstrate your advanced skills in master teaching or teacher leadership.

The six Teacher Leader programs approved by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) as of 2019 fall under two categories: graduate-level programs at a college or university or professional training programs run by a professional network or school district.

Graduate-Level Programs in Michigan

Oakland University

Oakland University offers a Master of Education Degree in Teacher Leadership, and certified teachers are eligible to apply for the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate after completion of the year one courses. The first program in Michigan to be approved for the Advanced Professional designation, it is conveniently offered in a hybrid format that consists mostly of online learning along with one or two Saturday sessions per month on campus and optional evening support sessions. Applicants must have previously completed an approved teacher training program and must demonstrate that they have achieved five years of effective or highly effective teaching evaluations. The program is targeted at educators who want to become teacher leaders, increase their influence at their school or district, or pursue further education via the post-master's degree or doctoral degree programs in Educational Leadership. Applicants to this program also must have ready access to a K-12 classroom.

Adrian College

Adrian College offers two online programs, the Post Graduate International Baccalaureate Certificate Program and the Master of Education in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, that meet the Teacher Leader program requirements for the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate. Graduates of both programs are also eligible for the International Baccalaureate Organization Primary Years Program Certificate in Teaching and Learning. The programs accept students on a rolling admission basis and require previous completion of a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 overall grade point average.

Madonna University

Madonna University currently offers a Master of Science in Educational Leadership (MSEL), which is a part-time program that trains educators to be K-12 Teacher Leaders or administrators. This school also offers an Educational Specialist degree (Ed.S.) in Educational Leadership that requires 30 credits beyond the master's degree. The university website isn't clear about whether both of these programs are MDE-approved Teacher Leader programs that meet the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate requirements, however. Interested individuals may want to contact the university directly for more information.

Professional Training Programs in Michigan

Kent Intermediate School District

The Kent Intermediate School District is a local educational service agency that offers professional development programs for teachers including the MDE-approved Teacher Leadership Academy Certification program. The program is geared towards teachers who want to lead change from the classroom and engage with other Teacher Leaders. Teachers must actively participate in five courses in order to graduate and become eligible for the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate. The courses are a mix of in-person and online learning, and program registration is limited to 40 participants.

The Macomb Intermediate School District

The Macomb Intermediate School District offers a two-year MDE-approved Teacher Leader Program for teachers who hold an active Michigan Teaching Certificate. Students are required to attend learning sessions scheduled in the summer, on Saturdays, and in the evenings. Completion of a capstone project is required to graduate from the program and become eligible for the Advanced Professional Teaching certificate.

The Network of Michigan Educators

According to the MDE in 2019, The Network of Michigan Educators has also been approved to offer a Teacher Leader program; however, the program is still under development.

General Requirements for the Advanced Professional Certificate

Regardless of which Teacher Leader program is completed, candidates must meet all of the requirements by the MDE to be eligible to obtain the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate. The requirements include holding a Professional Teaching Certificate, receiving highly effective ratings on end of school year evaluations, and successful completion of an approved Teacher Leader program. Once all requirements have been met, candidates may apply for the Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate through the Michigan Online Educator Certification System (MOECS). Obtaining the certificate requires payment of a state-issued application fee. Certification can be renewed every five years subject to completion of education-related professional learning.

Michigan's Three-tier Teacher Certification System

Type Requirements Validity & Renewal
Standard Teaching Certificate Bachelor's Degree
Completion of MDE-approved teacher preparation program
Passing the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC)
Every five years with completion of professional learning
Professional Teaching Certificate Standard Teaching Certificate
Three years of teaching experience
Completion of professional learning
At least three effective or highly effective ratings on annual evaluations
Every five years with completion of professional learning
Advanced Professional Teaching Certificate Professional Teaching Certificate
Completion of an MDE-approved Teacher Leader program or certification through the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards
Highly effective ratings for three out of five most recent annual evaluations
No ineffective ratings within last five annual evaluations
Every five years with completion of professional learning

Explore Educational Leadership

If you're interested in learning more about careers in educational leadership, take a look at the following resources:

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