Washington State Teacher Certificate Renewal

To learn what ways you can continue your education and certification as a Washington state teacher, you can check out the article below. We'll look at the best ways to meet the state's requirements for renewal.

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At some point, every teacher must renew their license. This is to guarantee that teachers are continuing their educations and keeping up to date with teaching theories and trends. Here, we'll look at some of the renewal requirements for Washington state teachers.

Renewal Requirements for Teachers in Washington

Average Salary for Teachers in Washington (2017)* $32,120 (Preschool)
$62,580(Elementary School)
$63,090 (Middle School)
$64,760 (Secondary School)
Required Degree Bachelor's Degree
Required Field Any
Testing Requirements National Board of Professional Teaching Standards (Optional)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Professional Growth Plans

There are several ways in which you can meet the professional development requirements to renew your teacher certification. You must complete 100 clock hours, or its equivalent, of professional development per renewal. The first option is to complete a professional growth plan (PGP) with your school district. Each PGP completed is worth 25 clock hours. These programs must may already be work that you do on a normal basis as a teacher. Are you tasked with helping out on a committee? Do you attend workshops? There are many ways that PGPs can be completed, but you must provide proof of completing the activity and have a certified teacher review and sign the forms agreeing that this meets the necessary criteria. Only one PGP can be completed each school year, but these can be used to meet the necessary STEM, TPEP (Teacher/Principal Evaluation Program), and suicide prevention training required per renewal. While only one PGP can count each year, you can look at other activities and seminars that you are a part of to see if the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) has approved it as a professional-development-clock-hours activity.

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  • Teacher Education, Multiple Levels
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Continuing Education Credits

You can also go back to school and take courses that will relate to your work or another endorsement you would eventually like to add onto your certification. Every college credit you earn is worth 15 clock hours. You'll need to be sure that these credits come from an accredited and approved college or university. You can also meet the STEM an TPEP requirements needed for certification renewal through college courses. This can really work to your advantage if you'd like to add an endorsement, because you are sometimes required to meet a certain number of credits in an approved area or at least have the knowledge to test under the WEST-E endorsement exams to get certification in that area.


The National Board of Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) offers a nationally certified teacher certification. This can be completed in place of the 100 clock hours. To earn certification, you must complete four components under your subject. There are currently 25 subjects that you can be certified in. The first component is the actual NBPTS content-knowledge exam. You'll need to answer three constructed-response questions and 45 multiple-choice questions.

The other three components are all part of a portfolio in which you'll prove your knowledge and experience. You'll prove that you know how to tailor your instruction to individual students and individual scenarios in component two. Component three requires two videos of you teaching with reflections on these recordings. Finally, component four looks at your skills as a teacher and your work with families and the community as a whole.

Re-certification Resources for Washington Teachers

Working as a teacher is a lot of hard work, but renewing can be added stress if you are not prepared. If you'd like to be endorsed in another area or just become nationally certified, we have some resource options to help you get ready.

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