The administration of all early childhood education programs in Nevada was consolidated under the Department of Education, Office of Early Learning and Development in 2014. The office brings together all the various state and federal funding sources available for birth-3rd grade. It also collaborates with the Nevada Early Childhood Advisory Council in establishing standards of access and quality for preschool programs across a variety of settings.
Teachers are the common thread that runs through all those settings, and the state works hard to support anybody dedicated enough to step up to take on those important roles. Preschool is the time when the stage is set for a lifetime of progress in education, socialization, and health, and Nevada parents have a right to want their children to get a solid start.
The Nevada Silver State Stars Quality Rating and Improvement System offers a systematic rating scheme to assess the quality of child care centers, but it also offers a terrific toolkit for teachers and administrators working to up their game as educational professionals.
Early childhood is recognized as birth through third grade in Nevada. All preschool teachers in public settings must hold a state-issued teaching license. To achieve state licensure to teach preschool in Nevada, you must complete the following steps:
|Complete an Approved Educator Preparation Program in Early Childhood Education|
|Pass the Required Praxis Examinations|
|Apply for an Initial Teaching License in Nevada|
|Renew your Teaching License|
Step 1. Complete an Approved Educator Preparation Program in Early Childhood Education
The most streamlined approach to teaching preschool in Nevada for most applicants is through the completion of an approved teacher education program in early childhood education at either the bachelor’s or master’s degree level.
If you have not completed an approved teacher education program in Nevada, you may still qualify for an early childhood endorsement if you have completed at least 35 semester hours of courses in early childhood education for children who are developing both typically and atypically; these hours must include:
- 6 semester hours in child development and learning, with the content courses in diversity in culture, language, and ability; AND
- 12 semester hours in early childhood curriculum and program implementation that includes at least one course in the following subjects:
- Language and literacy
- Mathematics and science
- Social studies
- Strategies for working with children and disabilities
- 3 semester hours in early childhood curriculum and program implementation, consisting of courses in any of the following subjects:
- Curriculum for infants and toddlers
- Early childhood classroom management
- Integrated curriculum
- Play theory and creativity
- Positive discipline and guidance for young children
- 3 semester hours in family and community relations, including working with families
- 3 semester hours in assessment and evaluation for early childhood education
- 8 semester hours of student teaching involving pupils in at least two different age groups, one of which must have included children in the first or second grade and one of which must include children of any age from birth through kindergarten; at least one group must have included children with and without disabilities
Alternative Routes to Licensure (ARL)
You may also achieve licensure through the Nevada Department of Education’s Alternative Routes to Licensure (ARL) program. To qualify for an early childhood education teaching license in Nevada through an ARL program, you must:
- Be accepted into an alternative route to licensure program through a qualified provider
- Possess a bachelor’s degree from a postsecondary institution that is regionally accredited
- Pass a competency examination in basic reading, writing, and mathematics (Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators, see step 2)
- Hold a major or minor in early childhood education
You can learn more about Nevada’s ARL program here.
Step 2. Pass the Required Praxis Examinations
All candidates for licensure must take and pass the following Praxis examinations:
- Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (Core): This examination consists of three core exams, which may be taken separately or at the same time:
- Praxis Content Area Examinations:
You can learn more about the Praxis examination requirements in Nevada, including instructions on registering and scheduling here.
Step 3. Apply for an Initial Teaching License in Nevada
Upon completing all of the necessary pre-licensure requirements, you must apply for a teaching license to teach preschool, which requires submitting a complete application packet. This includes:
- Completing and signing an Initial Licensure Application (includes a fingerprint authorization form)
- Submitting official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions you attended (must include a seal of the university and the registrar’s signature)
- Completing a Form FD-258 fingerprint card
- Enclosing an initial application fee of $161 (made payable to the Nevada Department of Education)
- Enclosing a Verification of Teaching Experience form (if applicable)
- Enclosing a Verification of Work Experience form (if applicable)
You can expect to be notified by email or phone if your application is incomplete. Initial licensing applications may take up to 30 days, depending on the volume of applications at any time. If you qualify for a new license, the new license will be sent to the email address listed on the application.
Step 4. Renew your Teaching License
All renewal credits must be:
- Directly related to your current license
- Part of an additional endorsement (if any)
- In the field of early childhood education
- Part of an approved program leading to an advanced degree
Professional development credits may be earned from a regionally accredited college or university at the undergraduate or graduate level or from a provider sanctioned by the Nevada Department of Education with preapproval to offer continuing education courses.
Exceptions to earning renewal credits:
- You may receive 6 renewal credits if you completed the requirements for the National Board Certification.
- If you possess an education specialist or doctoral degree, you do not need to meet the renewal credit requirements; instead, you need only submit evidnece of professional growth that can be attained by teaching at the college level or by attending seminars or workshops
- If you possess a master’s or higher degree, you may receive a maximum of 2 renewal credits by conducting a seminar or workshop or by teaching at the college level, provided the course or seminar is in early childhood education.
Nevada Preschool Teacher Salaries
Like most jobs in the Silver State, early childhood education positions are booming. Preschool teachers are looking at a 15.9 percent job growth rate between 2016 and 2026 according to the state Department of Employment, Training, and Rehabilitation, while administrators in the field can expect a 13.3 percent growth rate over the same period. But the strongest growth is for early childhood special educators, who are looking at a 20 percent jump in the number of jobs over this ten-year period.
All those numbers are well above the national rate of growth for those professions, and amount to an annual average of 250 openings per year, from a combination of both new jobs being created and normal turnover as teacher retire.
The pay rates are also pretty solid, according to 2018 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Although administrators and teachers tend to have a median salary at or slightly below the national number, when they get to the top 25 and top 10 percent, they blow right past the national averages (median, top 25%, top 10%):
Preschool Administrators: $47,620 – $64,390 – $100,060
Preschool Teacher: $24,760 – $41,680 – $58,460
But rates can vary depending on the specific area in the state you plan to look for work, so we have also included the BLS data for Nevada’s major urban centers below, together with a list of the largest preschool employers in those areas:
As the center of most of the growth in the Silver State, the Las Vegas metro area also offers the widest array of schools hiring preschool teachers and administrators:
- Clark County School District
- Shenkder Academy
- La Petite Academy
- Kidz Preschool
- Kids Co-Op
- 9th Bridge School
- Faith Lutheran Preschool
- Stone Bridge Learning Academy
- The Hills Preschool
- Children’s Learning Adventure
- Springstone Lakes Montessori School
- Star Academy Preschool
- Coronado Prep Preschool
Public schools and private learning centers in the greater Las Vegas area offer salaries to preschool teachers, early childhood special educators, and administrators that fall within these ranges:
- Median – $51,620
- 75th Percentile – $85,070
- 90th Percentile – $98,580
- Median – $24,250
- 75th Percentile – $36,020
- 90th Percentile – $57,440
Special Education Preschool Teachers
- Median – $56,550
- 75th Percentile – $65,560
- 90th Percentile – $76,820
Although Reno may be Nevada’s second city, it comes in first in the state for preschool teacher salaries at the median and in the top 25 percent.
- Washoe County School District
- Caughlin Preschool
- The Goddard School
- Creative World Children’s Academy
- One World Children’s Academy
- Five Hearts Preschool
At preschools in Reno, teachers and administrators can expect to earn salaries within these ranges:
- Median – $47,300
- 75th Percentile – $55,500
- 90th Percentile – $62,720
- Median – $25,800
- 75th Percentile – $36,410
- 90th Percentile – $49,450
Salary and employment data compiled by the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics in May of 2018 for preschool teachers, preschool special education teachers and preschool administrators – https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nv.htm#11-9111. The BLS salary data shown here represents median – 90th percentile salary ranges for the state and its MSAs (Metropolitan Statistical Areas) and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries.
Job growth projections sourced from the Nevada Department of Employment, Training, and Rehabilitation and published in the U.S. Department of Labor-funded Long Term Occupational Projections (2016-2026) database – https://projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm. Employment conditions in your area may vary.
All salary and job growth data accessed in September 2019.