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The Louisiana Department of Education (LDE), Division of Teacher Certification and Higher Education is responsible for Louisiana teacher certification. Louisiana offers a three-level certification system issuing the following types of teaching authorizations:
- Level 1 Professional Certificate. This certificate is valid for three years. It is renewable once at the request of the appropriate school or school system officer provided that the individual has competed 6 semester hours of credit directly related to their area of certification.
- Level 2 Professional Certificate. This certificate is valid for five years and may be renewed.
- Level 3 Professional Certificate. This certificate is valid for five years and may be renewed.
Louisiana certificates are issued in the following areas:
- Early childhood PK-3
- Grades 1-5
- Grades 4-8: generic, mathematics, science, social studies, or English language.
- Grades 6-12 for specific individual subjects.
- All level areas (K-12) for art, dance, foreign languages, music, and health and physical education.
- Special education areas.
- Principal and administration.
Additional teaching and/or administrative endorsements may be added to a Louisiana teaching certificate. Louisiana also offers ancillary certificates. An ancillary certificate allows an individual to provide non-teaching services in Louisiana’s K-12 schools.
Louisiana has an Out-Of-State Certificate for teachers certified in other states who meet all of the requirements for Louisiana certification except passing the PRAXIS tests. These certificates are valid for three years and may not be renewed. There are several non-standard temporary authorizations to teach as well.
The LDE offers two career and technical trade and industrial education (CTTIE) certificates: a nonrenewable CTTIE Temporary Certificate that is valid for one year, and a permanent CTTIE Permanent Certificate.
The Process for Louisiana Teacher Certification
The process to obtain a Louisiana Level 1 Professional Certificate is relatively straightforward. To obtain such a certificate, an individual must:
- Fulfill the education requirements by:
- Graduating from a state-approved teacher preparation program from a Louisiana college or university.
- Graduating from a state-approved teacher preparation program from an out-of-state college or university and meeting all of the requirements to be an out-of-state certified teacher.
- Completing a state-approved Practitioner Teacher Program.
- Pass the appropriate PRAXIS tests.
To obtain Level 2 Professional Certificate, an individual must:
- Hold a valid Level 1 Professional Certificate.
- Pass the Louisiana Teacher Assistance and Assessment Program.
- Teach for three years.
To obtain Level 3 Professional Certificate, an individual must:
- Hold a valid Level 1 or Level 2 Professional Certificate.
- Obtain an Master’s Degree.
- Teach for five years.
Certification for Teachers Certified in Other States
An individual with a valid out-of-state teaching certificate may obtain a Louisiana Level 1 Teaching Certificate. They may be exempt from the LDE PRAXIS testing requirements if they have at least four years of teaching experience in another state, and they have completed one year of teaching in a Louisiana public school system. All other individuals will have to pass the appropriate PRAXIS exams. A three-year Out-of-State Certificate may be issued to individuals who have not met the PRAXIS testing requirement allowing them to teach in a Louisiana public school.
All teachers new to Louisiana public schools are required to complete the Louisiana Teacher Assistance andAssessment Program (LaTAAP). An individual may be eligible for an exclusion from this LaTAAP requirement if they have a minimum of two years of public school teaching experience from another state and are entering service for the first time with a Louisiana public school system.
Louisiana License Renewal
A Level 1 Professional Certificate may be renewed once for an additional three years at the request of the appropriate individual with a Louisiana public school system, provided that the certified individual has competed 6 semester hours of credit directly related to their area of certification.
Level 2 and Level 3 Professional Certificates may be renewed by completing 150 clock hours of professional development over the five year period of the certificate’s validity.
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