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Weekly Column From The Arkansas House Of Representatives

By Staff, 01/4/17 4:26 PM

LITTLE ROCK – From the 12-30-2016 Arkansas House of Representatives weekly column:

You can never tell where a teacher’s influence will end. Teachers inspire us and push us all to our fullest potential. There are over 32,000 such dedicated professionals inspiring our students every day in Arkansas.

But if we take a look at young people who are enrolling in educator preparation programs, we know we may be facing a shortage of teachers in years to come. To insure education in our education, the Arkansas Department of Education is offering a quicker route to license renewal for those who have left the profession.

This program is available for a limited time to teachers who have left the profession and no longer have a current license, those who received an initial license but did not convert to a standard license, and retired teachers who do not have a current license.

The Teach Again campaign began at the beginning of November and will last until March 31, 2017. While the current rules require 60 hours of professional development, the Teach Again program is waiving that requirement and allowing qualified individuals to complete 36 hours if they do so by the end of March.

Renewal requirements also include completing a licensure application, paying the $75 application fee, and completing the required background checks. Free online professional development is availability through Arkansas IDEAS.

Since the campaign began, more than 200 eligible candidates have started the process and 15 have completed the requirements. To get started, those interested should first fill out the contact form at www.arkansased.gov. ADE will send the program application, background check instructions and resources needed to complete professional development requirements.

Arkansas students need and deserve passionate, motivated and effective teachers. If you meet the requirements for the Teach Again program, consider re-igniting your passion for teaching.

And for those just beginning to consider a career in teaching, please know that the Department of Education offers numerous paths to licensure. Visit www.arkansased.gov to find out more.image

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