ments may be waived or delayed for temporary or emergency licenses (National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification, 2000b). Subject matter test requirements may be waived or delayed in all but one of the states that require them. In some cases these waiver policies may mean that districts can hire teachers who have failed licensure tests. However, most available data do not indicate which requirements temporary or emergency credentialed teachers have met and which they have not met.

Although the numbers of employed teachers who have temporary or emergency credentials vary across states, the numbers are substantial in some states and some districts or fields within states. In the Initial Report of the Secretary on the Quality of Teacher Preparation (U.S. Department of Education, 2000a), 39 states provided data on the numbers of individuals in 1998 who were teaching with waivers. Using their own definitions for teaching waivers, 16 of the 39 states had waiver rates greater than 2 percent. Eight of these had waiver rates higher than 5 percent, and some were just over 17 percent.

States’ Provisions for Licensure Portability

Currently, 40 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico participate in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification Interstate Contract (National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification, 2000a). The purpose of the contract is to help new teachers obtain licenses in other states based on their completion of a state-approved teacher education program or conferral of a state license. States participating in the contract will issue a license to candidates trained or licensed elsewhere but may specify additional requirements such as tests or courses to be completed within a given time period. States do have the option of granting full reciprocity through the contract. There also are regionally specified portability agreements that may stipulate additional licensing requirements to be met over time (e.g., Missouri, Oklahoma, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, South Dakota, and Arkansas have a regional compact; Maryland, the District of Columbia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware have a reciprocity agreement; New York and the six New England states also have a portability agreement).

Beginning Teacher Support Programs

The support provided to beginning teachers varies nationwide. Although 28 states report providing beginning teachers with a support system, the process is voluntary in 10 states, and state funding is provided only in 10 to 12 states (National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification, 2000b). Mentors and support teams are usually selected at the district level based on state or local criteria, and the amount of training provided also varies greatly.

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