What is the STEM professional development requirement for certificate renewal?
STEM certificate renewal: Beginning on September 1, 2019, renewal applications for residency, professional, and continuing teacher and CTE certificates must document completion of at least 15 clock hours, or at least one goal from an annual professional growth plan (PGP), with an emphasis on STEM integration to meet this renewal requirement.
STEM integration is the authentic combination of at least two of the STEM components (science, technology, engineering, mathematics). The requirement applies to the following currently offered STEM area endorsements:
- Computer Science
- CTE (All Areas)
- Designated Sciences: Biology, Chemistry, Earth & Space Science; Physics
- Early Childhood Education
- Elementary Education
- Mathematics; Middle Level Mathematics
- Science; Middle Level Science
The STEM certificate renewal requirement is considered to be met by holders of a valid National Board Certificate.
For a list of endorsements no longer offered (but which may be held by current educators), and whether or not these endorsements are subject to the STEM certificate renewal requirement, please see this spreadsheet.
Professional Growth Plans (PGP)
An educator may develop a goal for a Professional Growth Plan that integrates at least two out of the four STEM components. This educator may implement this STEM activity somewhere within their professional practice, such as in a classroom, or through a professional development opportunity, including a PLC, staff meeting, or district level workshop. The educator may collect evidence from the STEM related activity for their PGP. When the educator records this PGP in eCertification, the educator indicates this PGP met the STEM renewal requirement by checking a box. Read more information about PGPs.
Guidance for Professional Development Providers
The intent of the RCW 28A.410.2212 is to ensure students have exposure to authentic STEM integration experiences which align to state learning standards including information about STEM-related career choices. The intent is for educators to incorporate the learning from the STEM activity within their professional practice such as a classroom or professional development opportunity (PLC, staff meeting, district level workshop, etc.). The educator must participate in or demonstrate implementation of a STEM activity. The learning or activity must demonstrate authentic integration of science, technology, engineering and math, incorporating at least two out of the four STEM elements: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Only one element out the STEM learning experience is not considered an authentic STEM experience.
In order to be considered an authentic integration, at least two of the four STEM components need to be incorporated. Providers of STEM-related continuing education should design workshops / course offerings to ensure educators will meet the renewal requirement by answering “YES” to the following questions.
- Will the STEM activity have an impact on STEM experiences for students?
- Does the STEM activity provide examples or resources to use with students or with other educators?
- Does the STEM activity provide examples or resources about STEM-related career choices to use with students?
STEM Certificate Renewal Examples
This is not an exhaustive list.
- Completing a PGP that integrates two out of the four STEM components
- Completing a clock hour course aligned to the STEM certificate renewal requirements
- Project Lead the Way Summer Training
- Leading a school-based Washington MESA program
- Participating in STEM LASER professional development
- Incorporating a STEM Design challenge within your classroom
- Attending a STEM workshop at a conference
- Participating in a workshop that demonstrates the integration of the STEM disciplines
- Collaborating with a Math, Science, Technology, or CTE teacher to implement a project integrating science and technology or math and technology or a design challenge that uses math and science.
- Participating in professional development offered by a district, ESD, educational organization, etc. that demonstrates the integration of STEM.
Please see the OSPI Certification page on the STEM certificate renewal requirement for more information.