Review these steps to learn how to become a PE teacher in Alabama:
|Complete a Bachelor’s Degree and Educator Preparation Program|
|Complete the Alabama Educator Certification Testing Program (AECTP)|
|Apply for Initial Alabama PE Teacher Certification|
|Renew Your Alabama PE Teacher License|
The 2009 Alabama Course of Study: Physical Education serves as the foundation for the development of physical education programs in Alabama. It also encourages school districts and physical education teachers to participate in developmentally appropriate practices, thereby helping students learn health-enhancing interactive behaviors while developing motor skills.
Step 1. Complete a Bachelor’s Degree and Educator Preparation Program
The Office of Teaching and Leading provides services for teacher recruitment, preparation programs, testing, placement, evaluation, and professional development, among others. It is also responsible for ensuring that teacher education program approval and certification standards are aligned with the State Board of Education standards.
The most streamlined approach to becoming a physical education teacher in Alabama is through the completion of one of Alabama’s educator preparation programs, which are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate levels through both public and private colleges and universities in Alabama.
You may qualify for an initial Professional Educator Certificate through a number of education-specific educator preparation programs:
Class A Master’s Degree-Level Program
If you already possess a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, you may complete an approved master’s degree program, which includes at least 30 hours of graduate credit in a teaching field.
Alternative Class A Program
If you already possess a master’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, you may meet the requirements of the Alternative Class A Program if you meet specific degree requirements, grade point average requirements, and prerequisite coursework requirements.
Class B Bachelor’s Degree-Level Program
If you do not possess a bachelor’s degree, you may complete a Class B bachelor’s degree program within an approved educator preparation program.
Class AA Planned Sixth-Year Program
If you possess a master’s degree, you may complete an approved sixth-year program of study, which consists of at least 30 semester hours beyond your master’s degree. This program may result in an education specialist degree in a teaching field.
The curriculum for an approved educator preparation program in physical education must include:
- Foundations of physical education, effects of participation in physical education programs, forces influencing the development of physical education programs, and the impact of international changes on physical education programs
- Physiological principles of physical activity, including:
- Biological sciences pertaining to the structure and function of the human body and human movement
- Prevention of injuries
- Implementation of emergency procedures
- Biomechanical principles of physical activity for analyzing movement, motor behavior and learning, and the psycho-social dimensions of physical activity
- Organization, strategies, safety considerations, and rules pertaining to:
- Basic movement skills
- Exercise and health-related fitness
- Sports skills
- Management and organizational principles including purchasing, budgeting, scheduling, and maintaining facilities and equipment
- Techniques of coaching and officiating a variety of sports and techniques
Graduates of approved physical education programs in Alabama should also have the ability to:
- Group students appropriately and safely
- Relate effectively to a variety of age groups and ability levels at the same time
- Teach a wide variety of skills and activities and be able to modify those activities to maximize student participation
- Perform a wide variety of skills required to teach a comprehensive physical education program
- Relate physical education to other disciplines and programs within the school
- Avoid activities that could be potentially dangerous, implement emergency procedures, and avoid negligence when providing physical education instruction
- Establish a good rapport with students and be able to coach and officiate a wide variety of sports
Upon the successful completion of an approved educator preparation program, the certification officer of the institution where you completed your program will recommend you for certification, at which point you will be eligible for PE teacher jobs in Alabama.
Step 2. Complete the Alabama Educator Certification Testing Program (AECTP)
The AECTP is Alabama’s statewide testing program and is required as a precondition for initial certification for all prospective teachers. To complete the AECTP, you must take and pass:
- Basic Skills Assessment: The Basic Skills Assessment consists of the Applied Mathematics, Reading for Information, and Writing assessments for the ACT WorkKeys System. You can find more information and register here. The minimum passing scores on this assessment are:
- Applied Mathematics: Level 4
- Reading for Information: Level 5
- Writing: Level 3
- PRAXIS II: Physical Education: Content Knowledge: You can view upcoming testing dates, nearby testing centers, and registration information here to take the PRAXIS II: Physical Education: Content Knowledge examination.
Step 3. Apply for Initial Alabama PE Teacher Certification
To apply for initial certification, you must complete the application and send it, along with documentation of compliance with the AECTP and official transcripts verifying your degree, to:
Alabama State Department of Education
Office of Teaching and Leading
5215 Gordon Persons Building
Montgomery, AL 36130
Step 4. Renew Your Alabama PE Teacher License
All professional educator certifications are valid for a period of 5 years. To renew your certification, you must complete an application for certification renewal and verify the completion of:
- At least three years of full-time teaching experience and at least 50 clock hours of allowable professional development; OR
- At least three years of full-time teaching experience and at least 3 semester hours of allowable credit
- At least 50 clock hours of allowable professional development and at least 3 semester hours of allowable credit
All content standards within the Alabama Course of Study are minimum and required, although schools, when developing curriculum plans, should include additional content standards to best reflect their own guidelines, resources, and activities.
The 2009 Alabama Course of Study: Physical Education is the basis for the development of physical education programs in Alabama. Content standards within this document, which serve as a framework for developing K-12 physical education programs in Alabama’s public schools, affirm the importance of cognitive, skill, physical activity, health, and student participation. Content standards are organizes into four strands:
- Skill Development: Demonstrates competency in motor skills and movement patterns needed to perform physical activities
- Cognitive Development: Demonstrates an understanding of movement concepts, principle strategies, and tactics in relation to the performance and learning of physical activities
- Social Development: Exhibits responsible personal and social behavior and values physical activity for challenge, social expression, enjoyment, health, and self-expression
- Physical Activity and Health: Participates regularly in physical activity and achieves a health-enhancing level of physical fitness
Phys Ed Teacher Salary in Alabama
Based on information obtained from the Alabama Department of Labor, the average Alabama PE teacher salary is $60,180, which is 43% more than the average starting salary of $34,220.
Physical education teachers with a great deal of experience have been reported to average $73,150 per year. It’s important to point out that salary usually varies geographically, as seen by the data shown below:
In Birmingham, teachers are paid on contracts of 10 months (204 days), 11 months (224 days), or 12 months (240 days). Their salaries are dependent upon their respective level within the 27-plus-step program as well as whether they hold a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, AA certificate, or doctoral degree. Given this, Birmingham City Schools reports that teachers’ salaries can be anywhere from $40,123 to $81,453.
The Alabama State Department of Education reveals the following teacher salaries for a 187-day contract: