Expanding the Pool of Teachers Policy
The state should offer a license with minimal requirements that allows content experts to teach part time.
Kansas offers a Visiting Scholar teaching license to individuals who demonstrate "exceptional talent or outstanding distinction in one or more subjects or fields." The state does not provide additional guidelines for obtaining a Visiting Scholar license or about the intent of the certificate.
Applicants must have written verification of employment upon licensure from a school district administrator. The state board of education reviews documentation and approves applicants on a case-by-case basis.
KSBE Regulations Chapter 91-1-203 and 91-1-201
Offer a license that allows content experts to serve as part-time instructors.
It is unclear whether the Visiting Scholar license serves as a vehicle for individuals with deep subject-area knowledge to teach a limited number of courses without fulfilling a complete set of certification requirements. It appears that may be the intent of the license; however, state policy does not describe the conditions of employment, whether it is for part-time or full-time teaching, or requirements that candidates must fulfill.
Require applicants to pass a subject-matter test.
Although this license is designed to enable distinguished individuals to teach, Kansas should still require a subject-matter test. While documentation provided by the applicant may show evidence of expertise in a particular field, only a subject-matter test ensures that Visiting Scholar teachers know the specific content they will need to teach.
That state explained that the Visiting Scholar license is a one-year license designed for someone with exceptional experience, "such as native language speaker, former CEO teaching business, physician teaching health, etc."
NCTQ encourages Kansas to consider building on this license to develop an adjunct license that can help districts address critical shortage areas.