National Board Certification is an optional, advanced teaching certificate. Visit the National Board Certification website for details.
Peter Ippel '07 describes his experience with becoming Nationally Board Certified in 2012:
My school district offers assistance in becoming certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. There is a coordinator who sets up meetings to answer questions. I went into the experience not exactly sure what I was getting into. There are four portfolio entries that you need to submit and then 6 essay questions that you answer at an assessment center. One entry usually focuses on analyzing student work (for most certificate areas), two others are usually centered around a video recording of a portion of your teaching and the fourth is about professional accomplishments, learning and family involvement. I knew that it would be a lot of work, but starting in October, I dedicated most Saturdays to working on my portfolio entries. I also did some work during Christmas break and some during Spring Break. It takes a lot of analysis and reflection. Other Nationally Board Certified teachers and counselors in the district helped by reading entries and offering feedback. The day that I sent my entries off, we had a big celebration with my family. Then it was time to get ready for the assessment center. That was a little bit scary and unknown, but it ended up going really well. The next step is waiting, results aren't usually released until the Saturday before Thanksgiving. When I found out that I passed, I was thrilled! Now I am serving as a mentor to a teacher working on her National Board certification. I also help read entries for other candidates. Overall, its a really rewarding experience. It helps you look more closely at what you do. Being a mentor and a reader is great because I get all kinds of new ideas! It's a long, arduous process, but the growth is worth it!