National Board Certification:
More About the Process
Becoming National Board Certified is an extensive series of performance-based assessments that includes teaching portfolios, student work samples, video, and analyses of the teacher's classroom teaching and student learning. This collection of materials is compiled over the course of a regular school year and is submitted in the spring.
Every item that is submitted must demonstrate the teacher's abilities and efforts to meet National Board standards in their field. Teaching professionals throughout the country promulgate National Board standards. As such, they are considered to be the highest standards of professional practice ever developed for the teaching profession.
(To learn more about National Board Standards, visit the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards website at www.nbpts.org)
In addition, teachers must complete a series of written exercises that probe the depth of the teacher's subject matter and teaching knowledge. These written exercises are completed in one day,typically at the Pearson Professional Center in Billings or Helena. Like the portfolio process, a teacher's performance on these exercises is just another means of assessing the ability to meet National Board standards.
Different from a test: While some teachers feel intimidated by the thought of "taking a teaching test," candidates quickly realize that the National Board Certification process is much different than any assessment they've ever known. That is because in reality, National Board Certification is nothing more than a highly effective process of self-reflection and evaluation that requires candidates to think about their teaching in new and better ways.
As a result, over 90% of Montana teachers who did not become certified after their initial try have "retaken" portions of the process so they can improve their scores while further improving their teaching practice. Although not every teacher becomes certified, almost all feel that the process provides exceptional professional benefits that translate into improved classroom performance.
Fees & scholarships: Because of the extraordinary amount of work involved in evaluating and scoring the variety of assessments involved in National Board Certification, the fee for pursuing certification is $2,500. However, teachers should remember that scholarships and loan programs are available to pursue National Board Certification.
(See more information about these opportunities at the Scholarships and Opportunities link.)
Stipends: Furthermore, the state of Montana will provide professional stipends of $3,000 to those teachers who achieve National Board Certification. In addition, several Montana districts provide annual salary supplements or incentives for National Board Certified teachers.
National Board Certified Teachers in Montana
Loans & Scholarships
Candidate Support & Assistance