2018 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 70. Schools
§70-6-190. Qualifications for teacher employment and certification.

Universal Citation: 70 OK Stat § 70-6-190 (2018)

A. The board of education of each school district shall employ and contract in writing, as required in Section 6-101 of this title, only with persons certified to teach by the State Board of Education in accordance with the Oklahoma Teacher Preparation Act, except as otherwise provided for by Section 6-101 of this title and by other law.

B. The Board shall issue a certificate to teach to any person who:

1. Has successfully completed the teacher education program required by the Commission for Educational Quality and Accountability;

2. Has graduated from an accredited institution of higher education that has approval or accreditation for teacher education,

3. Has met all other requirements as may be established by the Board;

4. Has made the necessary application and paid the competency examination fee in an amount and as prescribed by the Commission,

5. Has successfully completed the competency examination required in Section 6-187 of this title; and

6. Beginning November 1, 2001, has on file with the Board a current Oklahoma criminal history record from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as well as a national criminal history record check as defined in Section 150.9 of Title 74 of the Oklahoma Statutes. Upon receipt of the Oklahoma criminal history record, the Board may issue a temporary certificate which shall be effective until receipt of the national fingerprint-based criminal history record. The person applying for a certificate shall be responsible for the cost of the criminal history records.

C. The Board shall issue a certificate to teach to any person who:

1. Holds an out-of-state certificate and meets the requirements set forth in subsection F of this section;

2. Holds certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards;

3. Holds an out-of-country certificate and meets the requirements set forth in subsection F of this section; or

4. Has successfully completed a competency examination used in the majority of other states or comparable customized exam and meets the requirements set forth in subsection G of this section.

D. Beginning July 1, 2004, any person applying for initial Oklahoma certification shall have on file with the Board a current Oklahoma criminal history record from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as well as a national criminal history record check as defined in Section 150.9 of Title 74 of the Oklahoma Statutes. Upon receipt of the Oklahoma criminal history record, the Board may issue a temporary certificate which shall be effective until receipt of the national fingerprint-based criminal history record. The person applying for a certificate shall be responsible for the cost of the criminal history records.

E. Any person holding a valid certificate, issued prior to January 1, 1997, shall be a certified teacher for purposes of the Oklahoma Teacher Preparation Act, subject to any professional development requirements prescribed by the Oklahoma Teacher Preparation Act or by the State Board of Education.

F. 1. The Board shall issue a certificate to teach to a person who holds a valid out-of-state certificate or to a person who holds a valid out-of-country certificate and meets any requirements established by the Board. The certificate to teach shall only be for those subject areas and grade levels most closely aligned to the subject areas and grade levels recognized on the out-of-state or out-of-country certificate.

2. A person who meets the requirements of paragraph 1 of this subsection shall not be required to take any competency examinations in those subject areas and grade levels most closely aligned to the subject areas and grade levels recognized on the out-of-state or out-of-country certificate.

3. A person who meets the requirements of paragraph 1 of this subsection shall have on file with the Board a current Oklahoma criminal history record check from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as well as a national criminal history record check as defined in Section 150.9 of Title 74 of the Oklahoma Statutes. Upon receipt of the Oklahoma criminal history record check, the Board may issue a temporary certificate which shall be effective until receipt of the national fingerprint-based criminal history record check. The person applying for a certificate shall be responsible for the cost of the criminal history record checks.

4. The Board shall promulgate rules establishing a process by which out-of-country certificates will be reviewed and evaluated for purposes of awarding a certificate to teach pursuant to this subsection.

G. 1. The Board shall issue a certificate to teach to a person who has successfully completed a competency exam used in a majority of the other states. The certificate to teach shall only be for those subject areas and grade levels that correspond with a certification area used in Oklahoma.

2. A person who meets the requirements of paragraph 1 of this subsection shall have on file with the Board a current Oklahoma criminal history record check from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation as well as a national criminal history record check as defined in Section 150.9 of Title 74 of the Oklahoma Statutes. Upon receipt of the Oklahoma criminal history record check, the Board may issue a temporary certificate which shall be effective until receipt of the national fingerprint-based criminal history record check. The person applying for a certificate shall be responsible for the cost of the criminal history record checks.

H. The Board shall issue a lead teaching certificate to any person who upon application:

1. Has successfully completed the requirements of this subsection;

2. Has a minimum of five (5) years of experience as a teacher;

3. Participates in a meaningful individualized program of professional development, as provided for in Section 6-101.10 of this title;

4. Has earned a "highly effective" or "superior" rating pursuant to Section 6-101.16 of this title; and

5. May have a teaching load of not more than seventy-five percent (75%) student instruction to allow the teacher to mentor other teachers.

I. 1. The Board shall issue a master teaching certificate to any person who upon application:

a.has successfully completed the requirements of this subsection,

b.has a minimum of seven (7) years of experience as a teacher, and

c.(1)has earned a "superior" rating pursuant to Section 6-101.16 of this title, or

(2)has earned a "highly effective" rating pursuant to Section 6-101.16 of this title and holds or has held a National Board certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

2. Teachers with a master teaching certificate may assume leadership roles that include but are not limited to:

a.the planning and delivery of professional development activities designed to improve instructional strategies,

b.the facilitation of an instructional leadership team within the building or school district in which the lead teacher is assigned, and

c.the mentoring of other teachers and participation in evaluations of other teachers.

3. Teachers with a master teaching certificate may have a teaching load of not more than fifty percent (50%) student instruction to allow the lead teacher to spend time on:

a.co-teaching,

b.co-planning,

c.peer reviews, and

d.other duties mutually agreed upon by the superintendent and the master teacher, and may be used to satisfy the qualitative evaluation component for teachers as required by Section 6-101.16 of this title by performing the duties set forth in this paragraph.

J. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules to implement a renewal schedule and associated fees for lead and master teaching certificates. The rules shall allow a teacher that no longer meets the requirements of a lead or master teaching certificate to make application for the standard teaching certificate.

K. The terms of the contracts issued to those holding lead and master teaching certificates shall include the following:

1. Lead: an additional ten (10) days to be used to strengthen instructional leadership. A person with a lead teaching certificate shall receive an annual salary supplement of at least Three Thousand Dollars ($3,000.00) or the district's daily rate of pay, whichever is higher, in addition to the salary for which the teacher qualifies pursuant to Section 18-114.14 of this title; and

2. Master: an additional fifteen (15) days to be used to strengthen leadership. A person with a master teaching certificate shall receive an annual salary supplement of at least Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00) or the district's daily rate of pay, whichever is higher, in addition to the salary for which the teacher qualifies pursuant to Section 18-114.14 of this title.

If a person with a lead or master teaching certificate changes school districts during the life of the certificate, the terms of the contracts required in this subsection shall be subject to approval by the new employing school district.

L. 1. Any person who is eligible for a lead or master teaching certificate described in this section shall make application for the following school year with the State Board of Education. The application shall include a recommendation from the local board of education and determination that the applicant has met the statutory criteria. In reviewing an application, the local school board of education and the superintendent shall consider the ability of the school district to fulfill the additional requirements described in subsections H and I of this section before making a recommendation to the State Board of Education.

2. The State Department of Education shall develop an application to implement the provisions of this subsection and make it available to school districts.

M. Beginning in the 2021-2022 school year, the Department shall make the teaching certificates provided for in this section available for any person who has received a recommendation from their local board of education and who meets the eligibility criteria.

N. For the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school years, the Department shall identify school districts to implement the teaching certificates provided for in this section on a pilot program basis with the assistance of public-private partnerships, funding from philanthropic organizations or federal grants.

O. The Department shall seek funding necessary for the administration of this section. If funding for the administration of the teaching certificates listed in paragraphs H and I is not available, the Department shall not be required to fulfill the requirements listed in subsections K, L, M and N of the section.

P. The State Board of Education shall promulgate rules to implement the provisions of this act.

Added by Laws 1995, c. 322, § 11, eff. July 1, 1995. Amended by Laws 1997, c. 344, § 5, emerg. eff. June 9, 1997; Laws 2001, c. 34, § 2, eff. Nov. 1, 2001; Laws 2001, c. 425, § 3, emerg. eff. June 5, 2001; Laws 2002, c. 236, § 3, eff. July 1, 2002; Laws 2003, c. 204, § 10, eff. Nov. 1, 2003; Laws 2004, c. 438, § 1, eff. July 1, 2004; Laws 2005, c. 185, § 4, emerg. eff. May 17, 2005; Laws 2014, c. 124, § 17, eff. July 1, 2014; Laws 2015, c. 137, § 1, emerg. eff. July 1, 2015; Laws 2016, c. 322, § 1, eff. July 1, 2016; Laws 2018, c. 229, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2018.

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