How To Become a Teacher in Pennsylvania


This guide will take you through the steps on how to become a teacher in Pennsylvania, including education requirements, teacher training, assessments, fingerprinting, reciprocity, teacher jobs and teacher salary information.

Pennsylvania Teacher Certification Roadmap

Areas of Teacher Certification

Pennsylvania offers the following teaching certificates:

  • Instructional I Certificate
  • Instructional II certificate
  • Educational Specialist Certificate
  • Administrative Certificate
  • Vocational Certificates
  • Instructional Add-Ons

In addition, the areas for endorsement are:

  • Early Childhood Education N-3
  • Elementary Education K-6
  • Grades PK-4
  • Special Education PK-8
  • Agriculture
  • Art
  • Business/Computer/Information Technology
  • Environmental Education
  • Family and Consumer Science
  • Foreign Languages
  • Health
  • Health and Physical Education
  • Library Science
  • Marketing Education
  • Music
  • Reading Specialist
  • Special Education N-12 areas
  • Technology Education

Pennsylvania Teaching Certificate Requirements

  • A bachelor's degree
  • Completion of a teacher preparation program
  • Passing score on the Praxis I and II assessments
  • Fingerprinting and criminal background check
  • Completed application

Education Requirements

In order to become a teacher in Pennsylvania, you must possess a minimum of a bachelor's degree. If you do not meet this requirement, here are some of the top online education degrees to help you meet the requirements of becoming a teacher.


Pennsylvania has specific Pennsylvania assessment requirements testing requirements, which include the Pennsylvania Praxis series assessments. You must have a passing scores on the PPST for Reading, Writing, and Mathematics, as well as the Praxis II for Content Knowledge Appropriate content area tests.


Pennsylvania requires that all applicants for teacher licensure undergo fingerprinting for criminal background checks. This includes three checks: Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Records Check, Department of Public Welfare Child Abuse History Clearance, and Federal Criminal History Record Information (CHRI).

Certification Reciprocity

Pennsylvania has reciprocal certification agreements with all states. As part of the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement, teachers certified in another state are able to qualify to teach in Pennsylvania. However, you will still need to apply for teacher certification, and it is up to the state department of education to grant license based on reciprocity. In some cases, there may be additional requirements you need to fulfill to receive a full teaching license.

Pennsylvania Alternative Teacher Certification

The Pennsylvania Teacher Intern Certification Program is an alternative pathway to teacher certification designed for individuals who possess a bachelor's degree in the field they wish to teach. The program allows these individuals to teach under this certificate while they complete the requirements for full licensure.

The Department of Education also offers an alternative for teachers who hold a Passport to Teaching issued by the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (ABCTE), so they may be eligible for a Pennsylvania Instructional I certificate in the subject areas of elementary, secondary English, secondary mathematics, secondary general sciences, secondary physics, secondary chemistry and secondary biology.

In addition to these programs, the Philadelphia Teach for America program assists working professionals in becoming teachers. And the Pennsylvania Troops to Teachers offers assistance to qualify military personnel who seek to become a teacher as a second career.

Become a Substitute Teacher

If you have a college degree but don't qualify for a teaching certificate, you may consider reading how to become a substitute teacher in Pennsylvania. You may substitute teach while you attain your teaching credentials through an accredited online program.

Teacher Jobs In Pennsylvania

There are a few resources to help you find teacher jobs in Pennsylvania. The first, Pennsylvania REAP, allows you to search teacher jobs or post a resume. The second job resource is maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Education: Teaching in Pennsylvania Job Search System (TIPS). The third, pa-educator, offers job postings from various counties in Pennsylvania.

In addition to those employment resources, you may consider contact the school or school district in which you'd like to teach. EdNA (Education Names and Addresses) can be used to find the name, address, administrator, and related information about the educational entities that the Pennsylvania Department of Educations serves. These entities include school districts and their schools, intermediate units, area vocational technical schools, charter schools, nonpublic and private schools, higher education institutions, and more.

Pennsylvania Teacher Salaries

The school district of Philadelphia offers Pennsylvania teacher salary schedule and new teacher salary schedule, showing salaries ranging from $41,111 to $75,572 depending on the teacher's education level and number of years teaching. It is important to note that Pennsylvania teacher salaries will also vary by school district, so you may wish to consult your local district about specific salary information. In addition to your salary, Pennsylvania teachers also receive paid holidays, sick leave, retirement, health insurance and disability insurance, which should all be calculated in to your total salary package.

Resources for Teacher Certification in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Department of Education
Bureau of Teacher Certification and Preparation
333 Market Street, 3rd Floor
Harrisburg, PA. 17126-0333
(717) 787-3356

Interested in how to become a teacher in another state? Return to the How to Become a Teacher main page, or click on one of these neighboring states below.