How to Become a PE Teacher in Texas?

How to Become a PE Teacher in Texas?

Becoming a PE teacher in Texas offers a rewarding career path with opportunities to make a positive impact on the lives of students and contribute to the health and wellness of the community. The Blue Star State has produced some of the most renowned athletes, marching band members, and cheerleaders in the country. Part of their success is attributed directly to the state PE teachers.

In this article, we will explain the steps involved in becoming a PE teacher in the Blue Star State.

Becoming a PE Teacher in Texas

Step 1: Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

Some aspiring teachers have this misconception that you don’t need a degree to be a PE teacher in Texas. But that’s not true. In fact, it is mandatory to earn a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university.

According to TEA guidelines, individuals seeking certification must hold at least a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education.

Section 230.10 specifies the minimum educational requirements for individuals seeking initial teacher certification, including the completion of a bachelor’s degree.

While certifications and specialized training are valuable additions to a teacher’s qualifications, they do not replace the requirement for a bachelor’s degree in education or a related field.

However, there is flexibility in the area in which you can pursue your bachelor’s degree. In Texas, there is no specific restriction on the subject in which you need to major to qualify for Physical Education (PE) teaching jobs.

That being said, individuals interested in pursuing a career as a PE teacher typically major in fields related to education, kinesiology, or physical education. These majors provide coursework and training specifically tailored to teaching methods, curriculum development, exercise science, and child development. So, in case you haven’t already, enroll for a bachelor’s degree at a recognized university and complete it.

A young female student sitting at the table, using tablet when studying.

Step 2: Complete a Teacher Preparation Program

In Texas, completion of a Teacher Preparation Program (TPP) is necessary to become a certified teacher. And this is applicable to PE jobs as well.

Section 230.32 of the Texas Administrative Code specifies the criteria for the issuance of standard teaching certificates, including the completion of an approved educator preparation program. This certificate warrants that you’re qualified to become a teacher in the state.

To complete the TPP, you need to enroll in the program first. Choose an educator preparation program, like one from Teacher Builder, which is approved by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) for PE teacher certification. These programs are offered by colleges, universities, and alternative certification programs across the state.

Complete the required coursework and training as outlined by the TPP. This may include classes in teaching methods, curriculum design, child development, exercise science, motor skills development, and coaching techniques specific to physical education.

Upon successful completion of the TPP, obtain a recommendation for teacher certification from the educator preparation program provider. This recommendation is required when applying for teacher certification through the TEA.

Step 3: Obtain Certification Related to PE

To become a Physical Education (PE) teacher in Texas, individuals must obtain specific certifications as mandated by the Texas Education Agency. Two mandatory certifications are:

  • Physical Education EC-12 (158)

This certification authorizes individuals to teach PE at all grade levels, from early childhood through grade 12. The exam assesses knowledge and skills related to physical education content, instructional strategies, assessment methods, and student development.

The content areas covered are: foundations of physical education, motor development and motor learning, movement skills and concepts, physical fitness and wellness, social and emotional development, safety and risk management in physical activity settings.

  • Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 (160)

This certification is a general pedagogical certification that applies to all teaching positions in Texas, including PE teaching. The exam assesses knowledge and skills related to teaching methods, classroom management, student assessment, professional responsibilities, and ethical conduct.

You must complete both certifications to become a PE teacher.

Besides the two mentioned above, some additional certifications that may be required or beneficial for PE teachers include:

Health Education Certification

PE teachers who also teach health education classes may need to obtain certification in health education, such as the Health EC-12 certification.

Coaching Certification

PE teachers who serve as coaches for school sports teams may need to obtain coaching certifications, which vary depending on the sport and the requirements of the University Interscholastic League (UIL).

CPR and First Aid Certification

PE teachers are often required to maintain current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first aid to ensure the safety of students during physical activity.

So, it is essential to complete the necessary certifications along with a bachelor’s degree.

School kids celebrating with their coach on a sports field.

Step 4: Apply for PE Teaching Jobs

Now that you have met all the educational requirements, it’s time to go ahead and apply for PE teaching jobs.

Utilize online job portals and career websites to search for PE teaching positions in Texas. Some popular job portals to consider include:

  • Texas Education Agency (TEA) Job Board: The TEA website often lists job openings for teaching positions in Texas public schools.
  • Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) Job Bank: TWC’s job bank provides listings for various job opportunities, including teaching positions.
  • Teacher Job Network (TJN): TJN is a platform specifically designed for educators, including PE teachers, to search for job openings in Texas.

Other than the ones mentioned above, explore the websites of school districts in Texas to access job postings and employment opportunities directly. Many school districts maintain dedicated sections on their websites for job seekers.

Join professional organizations related to physical education and education in Texas, such as the Texas Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (TAHPERD). These organizations often provide job boards, networking events, and resources for members.

Or else consider working with education-focused recruitment agencies or staffing firms that specialize in placing teachers in Texas schools. These agencies may help match candidates with suitable job opportunities.

Apply to multiple PE job openings to increase your chance of landing a job. Remember, the more jobs you apply to, the higher your chance of getting selected.

Group of elementary students having PE class.

Step 5: Complete a Background Check

After you get selected for a PE job, the hiring institute will ask you to undergo a background check. Background checks are conducted to ensure the safety and well-being of students by screening potential educators for any criminal history or other disqualifying factors.

Texas Education Code, Chapter 22, Subchapter C mandates school districts and charter schools to conduct criminal history checks on all applicants for employment, including teachers, administrators, and support staff.

It takes anywhere from a few days to a week to get the check done. The school district may ask you to provide copies of certificates obtained from law enforcement agencies. So be prepared with them.

After passing the background check, you can begin your career as a PE teacher in Texas.

Become a PE Teacher in Texas with Teacher Builder

There is a consistent demand for qualified PE teachers in Texas schools, providing job stability and opportunities for career growth. So rest assured, you’re moving in the right direction.

Are you ready to begin your journey? Teacher Builder provides a quick, adaptable, and cost-effective path to obtaining your teaching certification—all online. This allows you to learn at your own speed, receive assistance during your initial year of teaching, and receive support in securing the ideal job in Austin. Applying is free, so don’t wait any longer to pursue your dream career! Contact us today to learn more.



This article does not contain legal, educational, or government advice. As regulations can change from time to time, readers are advised to check with their local education departments to receive up-to-date information.


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