The state should help to make licenses fully portable among states, with appropriate safeguards.
Iowa does not support licensure reciprocity for certified teachers from other states.
Regrettably, out-of-state teachers lacking three years of experience must show completion of mandated tests from the state in which the applicant is currently licensed; however, they are then only eligible for the state's initial license.
Teachers with valid out-of-state certificates may be eligible for Iowa's professional certificate. Applicants must have three years of experience and meet the state's recency requirement of 160 days of teaching during the last five years. Transcripts are also required for all applicants. Because the state requires completion of an approved teacher preparation program, it appears to analyze transcripts to determine whether a teacher was prepared through a traditional or alternate route and whether additional coursework will be required. States that reach a determination about an applicant's licensure status on the basis of the course titles listed on the applicant's transcript may end up mistakenly equating the amount of required coursework with the teacher's qualifications.
Iowa is also a participant in the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement; however, the latest iteration of this agreement no longer purports to be a reciprocity agreement among states and thus is no longer included in this analysis.
Out-of-State Application for Licensure Checklist www.iowa.gov/boee/forms/outstate.pdf
To uphold standards, require that teachers coming from other states meet testing requirements.
Iowa requires subject-matter testing only for elementary teachers. The state should adopt subject-matter testing requirements whereby all teachers, without exception, must pass licensing tests within a year of hire. Iowa should then require out-of-state teachers to meet its standards.
Offer a standard license to certified out-of-state teachers, absent unnecessary requirements.
The state should reconsider its recency requirement regarding experience, as it may deter talented teachers from applying for certification. In addition, transcript analysis is likely to result in additional coursework requirements, even for traditionally prepared teachers; alternate route teachers, on the other hand, may have to virtually begin anew, repeating some, most or all of a teacher preparation program in Iowa.
Accord the same license to out-of-state alternate route teachers as would be accorded to traditionally prepared teachers.
Regardless of whether a teacher was prepared through a traditional or alternate route, all certified out-of-state teachers should receive equal treatment. State policies that discriminate against teachers who were prepared in an alternate route are not supported by evidence. In fact, a substantial body of research has failed to discern differences in effectiveness between alternate and traditional route teachers.
Iowa asserted that it supports unconditional licensure, and that three years of experience are required to advance to the next level. Further, the state added that it issues exchange licenses based on the completion of teacher preparation programs.