We at the American Montessori Society believe that continuing professional growth is a necessary component of best practice in Montessori teacher development.
Professional Development Requirement
For Those with Credentials Issued July 1, 2013 or Later
AMS requires that holders of AMS credentials issued on or after July 1, 2013 complete 50 hours of professional development every 5 years for the credential to remain active. The first 5-year period begins with the date the credential was issued. If professional development hours are not completed within the 5-year period, the credential will be considered inactive until the requirement is met.
The credential holder must keep a record of his or her professional development and be able to provide, upon AMS request, print or electronic verification of the event host, location, date, topic, presenter(s), and number of hours attended. For this purpose, the credential holder is welcome, but not required, to use the AMS Professional Development Form.
To maintain an active credential, verification of professional development is to be submitted to AMS 30 days in advance of the 5-year anniversary of the issuance of the credential, and every 5 years thereafter (no forms should be submitted prior to June 2018).
For Instructors & Staff of Teacher Education Programs
AMS requires that instructors and directors of AMS-affiliated teacher education programs complete 30 hours of continuing professional development every 3 years. These hours may be applied toward the professional development requirement described above.
Professional development events do not need pre-approval by AMS to count towards the requirement, as long as they adhere to the guidelines below.
Event Host & Format
A professional development event may be hosted by a school; a teacher education program; or a regional, national, or international Montessori group or organization such as (but not limited to) those listed on the Local Groups and Montessori Organizations pages of our Web site, or AMS itself (including our conferences and webinars). Additionally, it may be hosted by a regionally accredited college/university; educational foundation/organization, institute, or association; or a national or regional accrediting organization.
It can also include coursework completed towards earning a credential (for an age level different from credentials already held) at an AMS- or other MACTE-accredited teacher education program, or AMI teacher education program.
The event may be face-to-face event, a live webinar, or a recording of a webinar if written or electronic verification of participation is given.
The following event topics qualify for the professional development requirement:
- Montessori education and philosophy/pedagogy
- Classroom management
- Child development
- Health, safety, and nutrition (excluding CPR, first aid, medication administration, exercise)
- Peace education
- Service learning
- Leadership skills
- Social/emotional issues
- Special education and learning differences
- Education research
- Public or education policy
- Technology training that will enhance the teacher’s use of technology with students or refine the teacher’s computer skills in ways that will improve his teaching
Events that do not qualify: CPR, first aid, or medication administration training; exercise or yoga classes, unless they are related directly to teaching physical education to students; the reading of books, magazines, or journals; travel.
The American Montessori Society’s Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program is a yearlong intensive professional development opportunity to support individual's work as emerging leaders. Each fellow is paired with a mentor and provided with learning experiences tailored to meet his/her unique needs, interests, and qualifications.
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Check out these listings of events that meet the guidelines for AMS hours of professional development, and are hosted by relevant organizations worldwide.
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Attending AMS-approved events can earn educators AMS hours of continuing professional development—and eventually, an AMS Certificate of Continuing Professional Development.
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