Catholic School Educators
Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service:
The Art of Forming Those Called to Ministry
The Institute also oversees the formation of teachers in the Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of San Antonio to meet the TCCED certification requirements for elementary teachers of religion and the certification requirements for teachers who do not teach religion.
All courses are designed to meet the needs of adults who are active in ministry or interested in cultivating skills for ministry. Full and active participation is expected for all those enrolled. It is hoped that, once engaged in the formation process on any level, participants will realize their responsibility to be informed Catholics and continue their ongoing formation through continuing education opportunities provided by the Institute, other Archdiocesan offices, and area colleges and universities, as well as other Catholic institutions.
Certification for Teachers in Catholic Schools Who Do Not Teach Religion
Take the Online Course presented by My Catholic Faith Delivered. Once all 25 lessons have been completed, the individual must print a copy of the online certificate and submit it, along with the application for certification, to his or her principal, who will send it on behalf of the teacher to the Archdiocese of San Antonio Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service. All incomplete applications will be returned to the individual.
Formation for Teachers of Religion in Catholic Elementary Schools
According to the Texas Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Education Department (TCCB ED), Catholic Elementary Teachers of Religion must fulfill 150 clock hours of undergraduate-level coursework offered by an accredited Catholic University, appropriately distributed among courses in Catholic doctrine, Sacred Scripture, Morality, Social justice, and Sacraments or Liturgy.
The Archdiocese of San Antonio is partnering with the University of Dayton Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation (VLCFF) to provide high-quality, online, non-credit courses for certification. Catholic Elementary Teachers of Religion must take the full complement of 6 VLCFF courses to fulfill TCCB ED requirements. This certification must be completed within 3 years.
If you have any questions about the Formation of Teachers of Religion in Catholic Elementary Schools, contact Elizabeth "Liz" Ortiz:
Elizabeth "Liz" Ortiz
Associate Director for the Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry & Service
The following complete series of non-credit online independent study courses offered by Dayton University meet TCCB ED guidelines. Each course is 25 clock hours.
1. Images of Jesus
2. Introduction to Christian Morality
3. Introduction to Scripture
4. Survey and Catholic Doctrine
5. Introduction to Liturgy
6. Evangelization and Discipleship
The student will receive an email confirmation from Dayton University upon completion of the course. The CEU’s/clock hours and grade awarded will be posted on the student’s transcript within 5-7 working days.
Registering for Courses
Please register using the University of Dayton's portal.
Step 1. Start by watching both videos under Explore Our Programs on the VLCFF website. The Overview of the VLCFF video gives you some background information on the VLCFF, who we are, how we operate, etc. The “Getting Started with VLCFF” video gives you pointers on how our courses run, what is expected of you, and some great tips on how to be successful in the courses. Being a new student, they will help you understand the courses immensely.
Step 2. Create a profile (covered in the Getting Started video). Select Login in the top right corner, followed by Create a Profile. Fill in needed information (remember your username and password), and submit your profile. You are now an official VLCFF student.
Step 3. Check our course calendar for registration dates. During registration, log into your VLCFF account and select Register for a Course. Please note, if you see a waiting list for the course you wish to take, look just under it to see if there is a B section open. The "B" after the course title only indicates the second section open – it is the same course. "C" is the third section, and so on.
Step 4. Order any needed books (covered in the video and will be in your registration email).
Step 5. On the day your course begins, log into your VLCFF account. Scroll down to My Current Courses. Select the link and enjoy the course!
PLEASE NOTE: The certification you are completing for the Archdiocese of San Antonio is different from VLCFF certificate programs. You WILL receive a certificate of completion for each course you complete.
• You do NOT need to apply for VLCFF certificate programs.
• You do NOT need to complete the added Exercise “Certificate Program Students Only”
Lay Ministry Formation Fund (LMFF)
Lay Ministry Formation Funds are available for courses toward certification. LMFF applications must be received 30 days before beginning any course. Applications will not be accepted for courses already in progress or completed.
Elementary Teachers of Religion must take the full complement of 6 courses to fulfill TCCB ED requirements. Certain college courses may also qualify for equivalency if it is determined that there is satisfactory parity in content.
The Parish Ministry Formation program does not meet undergraduate-level standards and does not fulfill any area of TCCB ED Requirements. Likewise, parish-based adult education classes, RCIA classes, retreats, continuing education workshops, and other similar programs will not be counted toward fulfillment of these requirements.”
Applying for Certification with the Archdiocese of San Antonio
• Complete all required courses
• Fill out application forms
• Submit application forms & copies of certificates of completion to the principal
• The principal will submit the entire packet to the Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service
Incomplete application forms & missing supporting documents will delay the certification process.
Expiration & Renewal
• Certification is valid for 4 years.
• 10 hours of Continuing Education credit (CE) required annually after certification is achieved
• Continuing Education credit includes:
- Workshops, conferences, retreats related to the areas mentioned above, sponsored by the Institute or other Catholic Institutions,
Applicant must apply for certification renewal every 4 years providing proof of CE credits.