The state should close loopholes that allow teachers who have not met licensure requirements to continue teaching. This goal was reorganized in 2021.
Emergency License(s) Availability: Louisiana allows teachers enrolled in a preparation program to teach on a Temporary Authority to Teach (TAT) certificate while they pursue certification requirements. In order to employ a teacher using a TAT certificate, the local superintendent must verify that "there is no regularly certified, competent, and suitable person available for the position."
The state offers an Out-of-Field Authorization to Teach (OFAT) to a licensed teacher pursuing an additional certificate. Teachers with this authorization can teach out-of-field in the new certification area they are pursuing. This authorization requires a verification by the local superintendent similar to the TAT certificate.
Louisiana also offers a Temporary Employment Permit (TEP), which allows individuals who have not passed required state tests to teach if their aggregate score on all of their exams is equal to or higher than the total required on all tests.
Emergency License Validity Period: Louisiana's TAT certificate is valid for one year and may be renewed twice. Renewal of the TAT certificate requires the applicant to provide evidence of effectiveness based on the state's evaluation system. The OFAT is valid for three years and may be renewed for an additional two years if the state department of education designates the certification field "as an area that requires extensive hours for completion." The TEP is valid for one year and may be renewed for up to three years if the candidate demonstrates that the test was retaken during the past year.
COVID-19 State Policy: Louisiana has not implemented any changes to its rules regarding Provisional and Emergency Licensure.
COVID-19 policies do not affect the state's grade in Provisional and Emergency Licensure.
Requirements for Out-of-State Teachers: Because licensure requirements for out-of-state teachers are scored in Requirements for Out-of-State Teachers, only the state's policies regarding emergency/provisional license(s) are considered as part of this goal.
Louisiana Bulletin 746 Sections 323, 325, and 326 Types of Teaching Authorizations and Certification https://www.teachlouisiana.net/pdf/licensurestructure.pdf
Ensure that all teachers pass required subject-matter licensing tests before they enter the classroom.
All students are entitled to teachers who know the subject matter they are teaching. Permitting individuals who have not yet passed state licensing tests to teach neglects the needs of students, because it enables adults who may not be able to meet minimal state standards to earn teaching licenses. Louisiana should ensure that all teachers are required to pass licensing tests — an important minimum benchmark for entering the profession —before entering the classroom as the teacher of record.
Limit exceptions to one year.
Although suboptimal, there may be limited and exceptional circumstances under which conditional or emergency licenses are necessary. In these instances, it is reasonable for a state to give teachers up to one year to pass required licensing tests. Louisiana's current policy puts students at risk by allowing teachers who have not passed required subject-matter tests to teach for up to three years.
Louisiana recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
6B: Provisional and Emergency Licensure
Teachers who have not passed content licensing tests place students at risk. While states may need a regulatory basis for filling classroom positions with a few people who do not hold full teaching credentials, many of the regulations permitting this put the instructional needs of children at risk, often year after year. For example, schools can make liberal use of provisional certificates or waivers provided by the state if they fill classroom positions with instructors who have completed a teacher preparation program but have not passed their state licensing tests. These allowances are permitted for up to three years in some states. The unfortunate consequence is that students' needs are neglected in an effort to extend personal consideration to adults who cannot meet minimum state standards.
While some flexibility may be necessary because licensing tests are not always administered with the needed frequency, making provisional certificates and waivers available year after year could signal that the state does not put much value on its licensing standards or what they represent. States accordingly need to ensure that all persons given full charge of children's learning are required to pass the relevant licensing tests in their first year of teaching, ideally before they enter the classroom. Licensing tests are an important minimum benchmark in the profession, and states that allow teachers to postpone passing these tests are abandoning one of the basic responsibilities of licensure.