I have an academic educator license from another state. Can I use that license to work in a Massachusetts public school?
No, you may not use a license from another state to work in a Massachusetts public school. For information on obtaining a Massachusetts license, including for those who completed educator preparation programs outside of Massachusetts, please visit the Out of State Applicants section of this website.
Am I required by state law to be licensed to work as a temporary substitute teacher in Massachusetts?
According to the Regulations for Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval 603 CMR 7.00, Section 7.14 (10), temporary substitute teachers are exempted from the provisions of G. L. c. 71, § 38G or M. G. L. c. 71A, § 6, which require the possession of an educator license. However, a school/school district may prescribe additional qualifications as a condition of employment. For more information, please visit Section 7.14 of the Regulations for Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval.
How do I know if my Preliminary or Initial license is still valid for employment?
Both Preliminary and Initial licenses are valid for five years of employment in a Massachusetts school that requires licensure by law. Your license will no longer be valid for employment once you have been employed full-time for five years in the role (field and grade level) of the license, in a Massachusetts school that requires licensure by law. If you stop working within a Massachusetts school that requires that an educator hold the appropriate license for the role that they are employed in, the clock "stops ticking".
Am I eligible for employment under an Inactive or Invalid license?
An educator who is currently employed in the role of their Professional license and allows this license to go Inactive is no longer eligible for legal employment, unless the school district superintendent requests and is issued a waiver. In addition, a Massachusetts public school district may newly employ an educator under an Inactive license as long as the educator renews that license within 2 years from the date of hire. If an educator's license is Invalid, an educator is not eligible for legal employment unless the school district requests and is issued a waiver or unless that educator renews the license.
Last Updated: September 30, 2018
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906
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TTY: (800) 439-2370
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