- Ector County Independent School District
- Training & Costs
Odessa Pathway to Teaching is an accelerated alternate route program designed to certify new teachers. So how does it work?
Once you’re admitted into the program, you start with the Enrollment Period. The Enrollment Period is a minimum of four weeks, during which time you start completing online test prep and coursework to prepare you to start Pre-Service Training. The Enrollment Period is self-guided and requires a minimal in-person commitment. You will receive all necessary to completing Enrollment Period requirements once admitted.
Once the Enrollment Period has concluded, you will begin Pre-Service Training (PST). PST is an intensive, 6-week training period where you engage in in-person practice teaching and skill-building sessions while receiving ongoing coaching and feedback from experience ECISD staff. To ensure all apprentices are prepared to lead their own classrooms in the fall, PST is a full-time schedule (8am-5pm at a minimum) and complete attendance is mandatory.
Upon passing the PST performance screen and receiving passing scores on your subject area TExES exam, you will be eligible for your intern certificate. Once an intern certificate is received and employment is secured within ECISD, the Internship Year begins. During the Internship Year, you will work as a full-time teacher within ECISD and receive a first-year teacher salary. You will receive regular observations, feedback, and coaching and will be required to participant in ongoing training sessions twice a month (one weekday and one weekend). The current salary for first-year teachers in Ector County ISD is $52,000. *Note: Starting salary is based on the 2019-20 ECISD budget. Salary is subject to change.
After successfully completing your Internship Year (180 days), passing the PPR exam, and meeting all other licensure requirements, you will be eligible for your Standard Certificate and will have successfully completed Odessa Pathway to Teaching.
A key component to the Odessa Pathway to Teaching is the ongoing, in-person support that each apprentice receives. Our training model is hands on and personalized, ensuring each apprentice feels supported and prepared to lead their own classroom. See below for more information regarding the support in place through our program:
- Mentor Teachers - Mentor Teachers are high-performing ECISD educators who have been selected to serve in this role. During Pre-Service Training, your Mentor Teacher will provide daily coaching and feedback. This partnership supports apprentices in gaining critical skills from an experienced teacher prior to becoming a teacher of record for their own classroom.
- Instructional Specialists - Instructional Specialists in the Odessa Pathway to Teaching are also Instructional Specialists within ECISD, bringing with them ample experience in developing teachers. In addition to providing coaching and feedback like the Mentor Teachers, Instructional Specialists also conduct observations, lead skill-building sessions, and monitor Pre-Service Training performance.
This year, tuition and fees for the Odessa Pathway to Teaching total $3,950. School year internship fees of $3,900 are only due once an apprentice is hired and can be paid off in interest-free monthly installments over the course of their first teaching year.
- Fingerprinting Fee - $50
- School Year Internship Fee - $3,900
- Total - $3,950
Odessa Pathway to Teaching is an intensive certification program that has high expectations for participation. To make participation more feasible, financial assistance is available in a variety of ways.
- OPT Scholarship: All apprentices are eligible to apply for the Odessa Pathway to Teaching Scholarship. The scholarship amount is $1,500 and is awarded in two installments throughout Pre-Service Training. Information about applying for and receiving the scholarship is shared following program admission.
- Testing Stipend: For the Summer 2020 cohort, funds are available to cover apprentices first attempt at the TExES content exam (a $116 value) aligned to their certification area. If the TExES exam is not passed on the first attempt, apprentices will be responsible for covering the cost of ongoing attempts.
- Housing Stipend: During the summer, OPT partners with Midland College to provide housing to any apprentices more than 50 miles outside of the Odessa area. Details regarding the cost, stipend, and application process are available upon admission.
- Signing Bonus: Candidates in Secondary ELA, Math, and Science are eligible for a $2,000 hiring bonus after obtaining their intern certificate and securing employment with ECISD.