Licensure Reciprocity: West Virginia

Expanding the Pool of Teachers Policy

Goal

The state should help to make licenses fully portable among states, with appropriate safeguards.

Meets in part
Suggested Citation:
National Council on Teacher Quality. (2011). Licensure Reciprocity: West Virginia results. State Teacher Policy Database. [Data set].
Retrieved from: https://www.nctq.org/yearbook/state/WV-Licensure-Reciprocity-7

Analysis of West Virginia's policies

West Virginia does not support licensure reciprocity for certified teachers from other states.

Regrettably, West Virginia waives its licensing tests for out-of-state teachers who have three years of teaching experience within the last seven years.

However, West Virginia offers its standard license to out-of-state certified teachers, without specifying any additional coursework requirements or relying on transcript analysis or recency requirements to determine eligibility.

West Virginia 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.

Citation

Recommendations for West Virginia

To uphold standards, require that teachers coming from other states meet testing requirements.
West Virginia takes considerable risk by waiving its licensing tests for any out-of-state teacher with three years of teaching experience. The state should not provide any waivers of its teacher tests unless an applicant can provide evidence of a passing score under its own standards. The negative impact on student learning stemming from a teacher's inadequate subject-matter knowledge is not mitigated by the teacher's having recent experience.

State response to our analysis

West Virginia recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.

Research rationale

Many professions have gone further than teaching in encouraging interstate mobility. The requirements for attorneys, for example, are complicated, but often offer certain kinds of flexibility, such as allowing them to answer a small set of additional questions. See the Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admissions Requirements 2007, published by the National Conference of Bar Examiners and the American Bar Association, available at:
http://www.ncbex.org/ .

On the similarity in effectiveness between graduates of traditional and alternative programs, see  J. Constantine, D. Player, T. Silva, K. Hallgren, M. Grider, and J. Deke, An Evaluation of Teachers Trained Through Different Routes to Certification, Final Report. National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, Institute of Education Services, U.S. Department of Education (2009), D. Boyd, et al. "How Changes in Entry Requirements Alter the Teacher Workforce and Affect Student Achievement." Education Finance and Policy, (2006).  T. Kane, J. Rockoff, and D. Staiger. "What Does Certification Tell Us About Teacher Effectiveness? Evidence from New York City." National Bureau of Economic Research. (2006), G. Henry and C. Thompson, "Impacts of Teacher Preparation on Student Test Scores in North Carolina." Teacher Portals. University of North Carolina (2010). Z.Xu, J. Hannaway and C. Taylor, "Making a Difference? The Effects of Teach for America in High School." The Urban Institute/Calder. (2009), D. Boyd et al "Recruiting Effective Math Teachers, How Do Math Immersion Teachers Compare? Evidence from New York City." Calder Institute (2009); as well as "How Changes in Entry Requirements Alter the Teacher Workforce and Affect Student Achievement," by Donald Boyd, Pamela Grossman, Hamilton Lankford, Susanna Loeb, and James Wyckoff, National Bureau of Economic Research, December 2005; and "The Effects of Teach For America on Students: Findings from a National Evaluation," (Mathematica Policy Research Inc., 2004).