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State teacher licensing “broken,” says auditor

The “confusing structure” of teacher licensing is making it difficult to hold the state licensing board accountable, says the Minnesota state auditor. A March 4 report from the auditor is dubbing the licensing system as “broken.”

The process to license teachers in the state has been called convoluted by prospective teachers, and the audit falls in line with that assessment citing the system as “complex, unclear, and confusing.” On New Year’s Eve of 2015, a district judge found that the state’s board of teaching broke the law in refusing to use an adopted portfolio system to consider teacher applications.

But blaming the state boards, according to the auditor’s report, “really misses the mark.” Instead, the report suggests that legislature clarify and simplify statutes, consider a tiered licensing system, and consolidate teacher-licensing processes under the Board of Teaching.

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