August 31, 2004



superintendent Qualifications



By: Soncia Coleman, Research Analyst



You asked if there are federal or state laws governing superintendent qualification and salary requirements. This report has been updated in part by OLR Report 2012-R-0364.




There are no federal laws governing superintendent qualifications or salaries.  Connecticut law requires boards of education to hire certified superintendents and set the salaries and term of office (not to exceed three years). Additionally, a school board may appoint a certified or non-certified acting superintendent for up to 90 days, with the approval of the education commissioner.  The commissioner may extend that approval for good cause (C.G.S. § 10-157). The certification requirements for school superintendents appear in SDE regulations and are summarized below (Ct. State Agency Regs., §§ 10-145d-585 to 587 and 10-145d-417). 


SUPERINTENDENT certification requirements


Connecticut’s teacher certification law has three certificate levels for all educators, with standards that must be met at each level depending on the particular certification.  For superintendents, the following requirements must be met:


Initial Certificate


·         Meet appropriate assessment requirements.


·         Master’s degree from approved institution.


·         At least 80 months of successful teaching, with at least 50 in public or approved private schools, in positions requiring or that would have required certification, or as a professional or managerial staff member in a state education agency.  This total may include the 30 months of required administrative experience (see below).


·         30 school months of full-time administrative or supervisory experience in public or approved private schools, or as a managerial or professional staff member of a state education agency, in position requiring or that would have required intermediate administrator or supervisor certification. (Requirement may be partially met by one-year internship in school administration as part of a planned superintendent preparation program.)


·         Recommendation from an approved superintendent preparation program where the applicant has taken at least 30 semester hours of graduate credit.


·         Graduate study in at least:


·         psychological and pedagogical foundations of learning,


·         curriculum development and program monitoring,


·         school administration,


·         personnel evaluation and supervision,


·         and contemporary educational problems and policy solutions.


·         A 36-hour course in special education that includes growth and development of exceptional children (both handicapped and gifted and talented) and children requiring special education, and ways to identify, plan for, and work effectively with special-needs children in regular classes


Additional Requirements for Provisional Certificate Program


·         Successful completion of the Beginning Educator Support and Training (BEST) Program assessment and 10 school months of successful service under an initial or interim educator certificate or a durational shortage area permit; or


·         Successful completion, within 10 years of the application, of at least 30 months of service as a superintendent in a public or approved nonpublic school or as an executive director of a regional educational service agency, or three years as a managerial or professional staff member for a state education agency; or


·         Successful service in the same subject area in a Connecticut public school under a provisional teaching or provisional educator certificate during the year immediately before the application.


Additional Requirements for Professional Certificate


·         30 school months of successful service under a provisional or interim educator or provisional teaching certificate.


Professional educator certificates are continued every five years after issuance upon the successful completion of at least 90 hours of continuing education activities.  For superintendents, this must include at least 15 hours of training in the evaluation of teachers (C.G.S. § 10-145b(l)(1)).