Training and Recruitment


While there are many problems with teacher licensure, it serves an important purpose. States need to set minimum expectations for who enters the profession. Deciding on those expectations is where states often trip up.

NCTQ provides clear, actionable recommendations to states for modernizing licensing requirements, safeguarding the quality of teachers without freezing out strong candidates.

State of the States 2021: Teacher Preparation Policy

Mar 2021

NCTQ examines state policy trends that govern some of the most essential aspects of teacher preparation, from reading and content knowledge licensure exams to admissions and basic skills test requirements.

A good licensure test can't predict greatness, but can predict competence.

Somewhat puzzlingly, there are only a few studies examining the relationship of licensing tests and future teacher effectiveness, each finding a positive relationship. These studies are limited to math teaching. (Goldhaber & Brewer (2000); Goldhaber & Brewer (1997); Clotfelter, Ladd, & Vigdor (2007)).

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States have come a long way.

In 2006, just a handful of states (6) required elementary teachers to pass a test in how to teach reading; as of this year, 39 have this requirement.

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Licensure tests protect teachers as well as students.

No teacher wants to teach a subject they don't know very well. Yet many states don't apply this common sense rule to who qualifies to teach subjects falling under the umbrella of science.

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Transferring a teacher license from one state to another is an exercise in frustration. There is not a single state in the nation which has solved this problem, though a handful are trying.

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Explore Licensure

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