The Department of Public Instruction on Tuesday announced a variety of emergency rules changes designed to address a growing teacher shortage in Wisconsin. Among them are:
- Allowing educators near or in retirement to apply for a nonrenewable, five-year license without professional development requirements.
- Increasing the number of days a short-term substitute can be in the same assignment from 20 to 45.
- Expanding criteria for renewal of emergency licenses to include attempting required tests for licensure.
- Adding new pathways for teachers to add additional licenses based on content tests.
Evers said efforts to address the shortage are being guided by the Professional Standards Council (PSC), the statutorily constructed group tasked with assisting and advising the state superintendent in improving teacher preparation, licensure, and regulation.
“The educator workforce shortage is one of the most critical public policy issues facing our state,” Evers said. “We must look for long- and short term solutions, identify what is driving shortages in Wisconsin and nationally, and search for actionable steps that can bring our schools and educators relief. Well-trained educational staff are critical partners in our work to prepare our kids for college and career.”
WEAC President Ron Martin said while WEAC is not opposed to the temporary measures announced by Evers, addressing the teacher shortage requires significant long-term changes, including increasing pay, giving teachers greater voice in their profession and treating all educators with the respect they deserve.
Martin said WEAC is committed to finding long-term solutions such as these while ensuring that any temporary or permanent measures to address teacher shortages “protect the integrity of the teacher licensing process in Wisconsin.”
The state’s education agency is making it easier for retired and prospective teachers to get professionally licensed in an effort to address shortages among the teaching ranks.
MADISON -State Superintendent Tony Evers is engaging stakeholders from around Wisconsin to identify and propose solutions that help school districts address critical staff shortages. The work is being guided by the Professional Standards Council (PSC), the statutorily constructed group tasked with assisting and advising the state superintendent in improving teacher preparation, licensure, and regulation.