CORONAVIRUS: Kansas State Board of Education adjusts criteria for emergency substitute teacher licenses | #Education

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention graphic.

The Kansas State Board of Education has taken a major step to address a developing shortage in substitute teachers as COVID spikes across the state.

On Wednesday, the board unanimously approved an emergency declaration allowing any person meeting certain qualifications to apply for so-called Temporary Emergency Authorized Licenses.

The emergency declaration removes the 60 credit hour requirement from regionally-accredited colleges or universities as part of the emergency substitute teacher licensing process. Candidates must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma — not a GED — have a verified employment commitment from a district or school system, pass a background check and submit a completed application to the Kansas State Department of Education.

The Kansas Association of School Boards, United School Administrators of Kansas and the Kansas National Education Association say this is not ideal, but it is a needed step to alleviate teacher shortages.

Licenses will expire June 1. Potential substitute teachers will then need to meet more stringent requirements if they want a license.

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