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Continuous Progress for a Licensure Academic Hardship Waiver

To:Superintendents, Charter School Leaders, Collaboratives, Principals, and Teachers
From:Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
Date:June 26, 2014


As indicated in my memo dated November 22, 2013, I approved a new policy regarding how continuous progress is calculated for purposes of determining eligibility for a waiver to employ an unlicensed educator for an additional year. This new policy is aligned with the Regulations for Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval (603 CMR 7.00).

Effective July 1, 2014, a superintendent (or equivalent position for charter schools, collaboratives, private special education schools, etc.) seeking an additional year waiver on behalf of an educator employed under a hardship waiver will also need to verify that the educator has received an evaluation rating of at least "needs improvement" or higher in the preceding school year.

As of July 1, 2014, the waiver application will be updated to include the following revised affidavit:

  • An explanation why the unlicensed candidate is qualified for the position and if this is an additional year waiver, a statement verifying that the educator received an evaluation rating of "needs improvement" or higher for the school year preceding the most recent waiver request.

In order to comply with this requirement, the documentation submitted by the superintendent must include a statement related to the performance of the educator. This statement must verify that the candidate has attained an evaluation rating of needs improvement or higher. Superintendents should not apply for an additional year waiver on behalf of an educator who has not received an evaluation rating of needs improvement or higher.

Point System

Beginning in the 2014-15 school year, the Department will only use the "point system," which was introduced this year. June 30, 2014, marks the end of the "old" continuous progress policy method of counting continuous progress - a combination of at least three courses or passing MTEL test(s) towards obtaining the license.

Where the only requirement remaining to be satisfied is an MTEL test(s), the Educator Licensure office may continue to consider completion of a required MTEL test within twelve months since the previous waiver was approved as making continuous progress. This will be allowed only once and the waiver will not be granted again.

Please note that districts/organizations must continue to provide all of the supporting waiver documents for review. Learn more about the policy for continuous progress.

If you have questions regarding the academic hardship waiver process, please contact the Department's Waiver Specialist, Sarah Johnson at 781-338-6605.

Last Updated: July 1, 2014
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