Early Childhood Teacher Certification in Wyoming
The State of Early Childhood Education in Wyoming
Wyoming, known as the “Cowboy State”, earns average marks for its overall public education. It is ranked the 23rd among the states in education, receiving an overall grade of “C+” in Education Week’s 2013 annual rankings. It earned its lowest score of “D+” in the K-through-12 Achievement and Teaching Profession categories. However, it ranks as the top state in the country for the School Finance category, earning an “A”.
Despite this highly praised educational spending, Wyoming was one of 11 states that in 2012-2013 did not have a state-funded preschool program. Over half of the children in Wyoming in 2012 did not receive early childhood education services prior to entering kindergarten. In any case, there are many opportunities for individuals interested in making a difference as early childhood educators in the state of Wyoming.
Getting a Wyoming Teacher Certification
The Professional Teaching Standards Board 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.
Endorsements are available to educators for working with children from birth to age five, birth to age eight or grade three, and elementary level K through six. The two types of licenses available to educators in Wyoming are as follows:
- Initial Licensure: for individuals with a bachelor’s degree or higher who have completed an approved teacher preparation program along with a successful student-teaching experience. The applicant must also have received passing scores on the required state tests.
- Alternative Route: for individuals who have obtained licensure in another state or through an alternative method. The applicant must also receive passing scores on the required tests or comparable tests taken in another state. If the applicant does not meet all the requirements, an Exception Authorization may be issued under the condition that the applicant shows how they will achieve full certification within three years.
Fill out the appropriate application here. Be sure to submit the required materials such as official transcripts, test scores, a fingerprint card, fees and more. It takes about two to four weeks to process the application but six to eight weeks during the summer months. View the Frequently Asked Questions page, or contact the licensing department, should you have any further questions about the certification/licensure process.
ECE Degree Programs in Wyoming
There are several early childhood education degree programs in Wyoming
is an academically reputable school nestled between two mountain ranges. It offers a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with three different early childhood education endorsements. A few master’s and doctoral degree options are also available. It is the only four-year college in Wyoming offering education degrees in the state.
boasting some of the lowest tuition rates in the country, offers an associate degree in elementary or early childhood education.
also offers an associate degree in early childhood education or general education. Larami County Community College, Northwest College, and Eastern Wyoming College offer similar associate programs allowing graduates to teach in preschools or child care centers, but the credits must be transferred to a four-year program in order to qualify for full-time teaching in public schools.
Finding a Teaching Job in Wyoming
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. The Wyoming School Boards Association (WSBA) job vacancy page allows users to search job postings and apply to specific schools districts with openings. The website School Spring also lists teacher 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.
Wyoming Teacher Associations
There are many professional organizations for teachers in the state of West Virginia sharing similar visions.
The Wyoming Education Association (WYOEA) numbers 6,300 members, including public-school teachers and educators across the state. It aims to improve both the profession and also 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 Wyoming School Boards Association (WSBA) helps improve public education across the state by strengthening local school board leadership. It provides educational services, financial services, and practical publications to its members. The organization was formed in 1945 and has been working hard to keep school-board members closely tied to the community for over fifty years.
There are also several organizations for teachers based on specific areas of interest, including the Wyoming Science Teachers Association (WSTA) and the Wyoming Council of Teachers of Mathematics (WCTM).
Wyoming Early Childhood Education Blogs
The Wyoming Kids First blog covers hot topics, issues and events in Wyoming schools, as does the WDE News education section. Wyoming teachers also share insights and information through their personal blogs.
Mr. Hoffman’s Kindergarten Classroom is written by a kindergarten teacher who believes in helping children become responsible and informed citizens.
Miss Soto’s Kindergarten Class, maintained by a kindergarten teacher, displays pictures of her students engaged in meaningful classroom activities.
Adventures with Ms. Miller is the creation of a kindergarten teacher who enjoys sharing some of the learning experiences she creates for her students.