Early Childhood Teacher Certification in Nebraska
The State of Early Childhood Education in Nebraska
Nebraska, known as the “Cornhusker State,” earns below-average markings for its public education system. It is ranked 46th in the nation with an overall state grade of “C-” in Education Week’s 2013 annual rankings. The state earned its highest grade of “B-” in the Chance for Success category.
Over the past several years, Nebraska has steadily increased the percentage of three- and four-year-olds who receive early childhood education before kindergarten, with 47% of children in preschool attendance as of 2013. Overall, there are many opportunities for career-seekers interested in early childhood education in Nebraska.
Teacher Certification/Licensure in Nebraska
The Nebraska Department of Education provides extensive information about how to obtain certification/licensure. You will need to familiarize yourself with this site, as it contains many resources valuable to both aspiring and current teachers.
Nebraska Teacher Certification Interactive walks applicants through the teacher-certification process in an easy, step-by-step manner by asking a variety of questions about educational background and work experience to determine the appropriate licensure route. The various routes to licensure for early elementary teachers are as follows:
- Regular Certificate: for applicants who hold a bachelor’s degree and who have completed an in-state or out-of-state teacher-preparation program.
- Provisional Commitment Teaching Certificate: for applicants currently enrolled in a teacher preparation program who have been hired by a school system.
- Temporary Teaching Certificate: for applicants who have been hired to teach as a substitute or in a regular classroom setting for a six-month period.
- Provisional Teaching Certificate: for applicants who have been hired to substitute-teach for a one-year period.
Nebraska does not have full reciprocity for out-of-state candidates, but does accept recommendations from colleges and universities and will examine each case on an individual basis. To apply, submit an application along with transcripts, assessments, and a background check, among other items. Please see the Certificate Terms page or the Applicant Manual, should you have any further questions about the licensing/certification process. The licensure department is available for questions as well.
Colleges with ECE Degrees in Nebraska
There are about 10 early childhood education degree programs in Nebraska.
is located on a beautiful small-town campus and offers a minor in early childhood education, as well as a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, with endorsements in both early childhood and elementary education. A master’s degree is also available.
is a private Christian college offering bachelor’s degrees in early childhood and elementary education. It also has a master’s degree option with an emphasis in early childhood education.
is a private liberal-arts school that offers bachelor’s degrees in early childhood and elementary education, as well as a couple of master’s degrees.
is a public university that offers undergraduate degree programs in Child Development/Early Childhood Education and Inclusive Early Childhood Education.
is a small four-year college offering bachelor’s degrees in early childhood education and elementary education. A couple master’s degree options are also available.
The Nebraska Job Scene for Early Childhood Teachers
There are several different avenues you can take to pursue a career in this dynamic field.
Public schools employ the vast majority of individuals seeking careers in early childhood education. Teach Nebraska is a free service that allows teachers to view job postings, access an administrator contact list, apply for jobs and more. School Spring also lists job vacancies within the state.
Other employers to become familiar with are private schools, Head Start and Montessori schools. Be sure to research the child-care centers in your local area, as many of these centers are in constant need of highly qualified teachers and assistant teachers. GreatSchools.org can help you find top-rated preschools and elementary schools in your community as well.
Education Associations for Teachers in Nebraska
There are many professional organizations for teachers in the state of Nebraska that share similar visions.
The Nebraska State Education Association (NSEA) represents 28,000 public school teachers and educators across the state. It aims to improve the profession and local public schools. It provides union benefits and is affiliated with the National Education Association (NEA), the nation’s largest professional employee organization, with three million members in over 14,000 communities across the country.
The Nebraska Association for the Education of Young Children (NeAEYC) increases public awareness of the importance of early childhood education and provides professional development for educators. The organization has been helping children from birth through age eight, as well as their families, since 1976. NeAEYC is an affiliate of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), an organization consisting of 80,000 members.
There is also a variety of organizations for teachers based on specific areas of interest, including the Nebraska Association of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), Nebraska Association of Teachers of Science (NATS), and Nebraska State Council for the Social Studies (NSCSS).
Best ECE Bloggers in Nebraska
The NC News Press education page covers hot topics, issues and events in Nebraska schools. Nebraska teachers also share insightful information through their personal blogs.
Live Love Laugh Everyday in Kindergarten comes to us from a kindergarten teacher who shares her thoughts about literacy, math, classroom organization and more.
Mrs. Cook’s Spectacular Second Grade is maintained by a second-grade teacher who shares stories and pictures of her daily classroom activities, as well as useful web sites for both teachers and students.
Mrs. Bohaty’s Kindergarten Kingdom is written by a kindergarten teacher with 11 years of experience who posts about classroom ideas, resources, favorite bloggers and more.