There are a lot of reasons to transfer your teaching credentials and license from one state to another. But, regardless of the reason for the move, when a teacher chooses to transfer from one state to another, obtaining appropriate teaching credentials is a top concern.
State teaching certification and licensing vary widely from state to state. Teacher license reciprocity allows candidates with out-of-state credentials to receive proper certification after meeting state-specific requirements.
Whatever your motivation for moving to another state, you will need to transfer your teaching credentials. Start by asking these two important questions:
License reciprocity — the ability to practice your vocation in one state based on certification in another — has different meanings for different professions. For teachers, license reciprocity does not mean you can automatically transfer your existing certificate from one state to another and then start teaching.
When you apply for a teaching certificate in one state using an existing license from another, the “destination state” is actually recognizing your credentials as verification that you are qualified to teach. For example, you must still apply and meet all teaching certification requirements for the new state.
Fortunately, the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement for Educator Licensure streamlines the application process and expedites the goal of teaching in your new state.
The National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Training (NASDTEC) is a collection of over 50 individual agreements by states and Canadian provinces. These agreements outline which incoming state educator certificates will be accepted. Some form of authorization will allow the inbound certificate holder to legally teach for a designated time period, or provide services for completion of additional requirements before the educator can teach.
NASDTEC is not a guarantee for full reciprocity. Many states do not immediately accept teaching credentials from other states. For instance, Georgia affirms with its agreement that it will accept credentials from Connecticut, but it does not imply that Connecticut will accept teaching credentials from Georgia.
Some jurisdictions consider themselves “full reciprocity” and do not have additional requirements. However, many jurisdictions do call for additional requirements to be completed for educators coming from other states or jurisdictions. These are known as Jurisdiction Specific Requirements (JSRs). The educator may have to complete JSRs such as coursework, assessments, or classroom experience before receiving a full professional certificate in a new state. JSRs may often vary dependent upon the educator’s years of experience.
The best information on JSRs and reciprocity should be obtained through contacting the intended jurisdiction. See NASDTEC’s map to connect to jurisdiction homepages.
States participating in the NASDTEC agreement generally follow the same guidelines for recognizing out-of-state teaching licenses, but each state has specific requirements that must be met before you can teach there.
If you’re relocating to another state and wish to continue teaching, you must follow that state’s licensing procedures. A great source for checking all state teacher licensure requirements is the Educational Testing Service PRAXIS web page.
There are several standard requirements for obtaining your teaching certificate in all states. Whether you’re applying in one of the participating NASDTEC states or another location, you should be prepared for the following steps to ensure your application for teacher certification will be processed as quickly as possible.
Fees: Be prepared to pay an application fee, as well as any required fees for obtaining college transcripts, background/credit checks, and document transfer costs.
Whatever your reasons for transferring to another state, be sure to identify the correct guidelines and appropriate steps to qualify for teacher certification. Select from the list below to learn about license reciprocity policies in your state and the state(s) in which you are interested in teaching.
|District of Columbia
Disclaimer: Education policies are subject to change. Check with the department of education in your state for updates to license reciprocity policies.
Categorized as: Teaching Careers and Professional Development