Secondary Teacher Preparation Policy
The state should ensure that middle school teachers are sufficiently prepared to teach appropriate grade-level content and for the ways that college- and career-readiness standards affect instruction of all subject areas. This goal was reorganized in 2017.
Content Test Requirements: Florida requires middle grades certification (grades 5-9) for all middle school teachers. All new middle school teachers in Florida are required to pass a specific subject-area test, one of the "Florida Teacher Certification Examination" tests, to attain licensure.
Academic Requirements: Florida offers middle grades certification for four specific subject areas: English, math, science and social science. Candidates must earn a major or complete 18 credit hours in their intended teaching field.
Test Requirements www.fl.nesinc.com Florida Rule 6A-5.066; 6A-4.0161; .0261; .0321; .0331 Florida Statute 1012.56
Florida recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
3A: Middle School Content Knowledge
Middle school grades are critical years of schooling. It is in these years that far too many students fall through the cracks. However, requirements for the preparation and licensure of middle school teachers can be especially problematic. States need to distinguish the knowledge and skills needed by middle school teachers from those needed by an elementary teacher. Whether teaching a single subject in a departmentalized setting or teaching multiple subjects in a self-contained setting, middle school teachers must be able to teach significantly more advanced content than elementary teachers. In order to do so, middle school teachers must be deeply knowledgeable about every subject they will be licensed to teach, and able to pass a licensing test in every core subject to demonstrate this knowledge. The notion that someone should be identically prepared to teach first grade or eighth grade mathematics seems ridiculous, but states that license teachers on a K-8 generalist certificate essentially endorse this idea.