Editor’s note: The following post was written by my frugal friend (and college buddy) Susan:
If you don’t work in education, you may not know that, as a rule, teachers can earn raises in one of two ways. The first is at the start of the new school year, we get paid a little more than last year. The second is by taking classes. Every district has its own rules about how many classes it takes for a raise, and what kind of class it needs to be and even the topics it can be on. The main topics are usually similar.
I am always on the lookout for classes that will enhance my teaching and cost less than the $300 a credit charged by my local public university. When I got a flyer from www.coolteachers.com offering 3 graduate credit, in-person classes for $445 and on-line classes for $295, I knew it was a scam. But I am just 6 credits from a raise so, in true librarian style, I did some digging.
All their courses are taught through fully accredited schools. I wanted to be SURE so I looked up their accreditations with the US Department of Education http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/ and sure enough! There they were with full blown a-okay status! I then cleared it with the HR man for my district and he said it was a go.
Wham! I enrolled in 2 on-line classes. So far, so good. There isn’t a tremendous amount of reading but there is a lot of opportunity to reflect on how what I am learning applies to my position and current practices. I have not turned in any assignment yet so I don’t know how tough the grading will be but I am not worried. I have 6 weeks to finish each course, just in time to slip in under the Feb 6 deadline.
If this looks like something that would fit your needs, PLEASE check with your district and state licensing organization (if using the credits for license renewal) to make sure it is okay with each of them.