For Immediate Release: July 18, 2019
JACKSON, Miss. – Based on a recommendation by the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE), the Mississippi State Board of Education (SBE) approved today a temporary license extension for certain prospective teacher candidates whose first-year special non-renewable license expired.
The extension applies to those seeking completion of an alternate route program who have had a year one special, non-renewable license since it was approved by the SBE on June 16, 2016 and never held a year two or year three license. This extension is expected to impact about 1,140 prospective candidates, allowing them more time to pass the newly revised Praxis Core assessments, including the Praxis Core Math, or meet any other criteria for gaining unconditional admittance to an SBE-approved, non-traditional teacher preparation program.
MDE recommended the one-time extension after hearing from superintendents in districts who have potential teachers who have not completed the first-year licensure requirements and after a change in the Praxis Core that occurred after candidates’ licenses expired. The revised Praxis exams will be available in the fall.
A non-traditional teacher preparation program, or alternate route program, is designed for prospective teachers who have a college degree in a content area, such as English, Mathematics or Biology, but not in education. The special non-renewable license allows prospective alternate route candidates to teach in their content area of knowledge on the condition that they complete a non-traditional teacher preparation program within three years.
The extension provides a window – from August 2019-June 2020 - for certain prospective teacher candidates seeking unconditional admittance to an alternate route program to take and pass the new Praxis Core exams or meet any other criteria for gaining unconditional admittance to an SBE-approved, non-traditional teacher preparation program. Unconditional admittance to a non-traditional teacher preparation program is required for the issuance of the year two special non-renewable license for school year 2020-2021.
To assist candidates with passing Praxis exams, the Educational Testing Service (ETS) has partnered with Khan Academy to provide free diagnostic and individualized learning plans for every test taker. This program will launch on July 22. ETS also has trained MDE staff and other educators around the test development process and conducted content review of certain Praxis tests so that they are better informed to train future teachers.
Patrice Guilfoyle, APR
Director of Communications
Jean Cook, APR
Director of Public Relations