November 22, 2017

Regional Superintendent, Tammy L. Muerhoff, Message

Welcome back to a new school year! I can hardly believe that Summer has concluded and a we’re off to a new year.  Wishing you and your students a fantastic year!

A Friendly Reminder!!!

Educator licenses will lapse on September 1 of the last year of the renewal cycle if not       renewed. If your license expired as of June 30, 2017, then be certain to log in to your ELIS  account and renew prior to September 1, 2017 in order to avoid paying a $500 penalty or completing 9 semester hours of coursework along with any applicable deficient professional development hours. Licenses not registered (fees not paid for registration) by January 1 will lapse. A lapsed license will only be reinstated by a $500 penalty fee being paid or by 9        semester hours of coursework being completed.

Middle School Endorsements Changing to Middle Grade Endorsements

Based upon recent legislation, there will be changes to the Middle School Endorsement process. They are as follows:

  • Any educator who holds a Junior High (5-8 or 6-8) endorsement issued prior to July 1, 1997 can continue to teach that endorsed area.
  • Any educator who holds a middle school subject area endorsement issued July 1, 1997 or after can continue to teach in that endorsed area.
  • Educators can apply for a middle school subject area endorsement through transcript evaluation under the current endorsement structure through January 31, 2018. If the educator does not meet the requirements for that endorsement, they will have 2 full fiscal years plus the remainder of that current fiscal year to remove any deficiencies for the endorsement to be issued.
  • Educators who currently hold a middle school subject area endorsement will be able to add a subsequent middle grade endorsement under the new endorsement structure that will take effect February 1, 2018 without needing to complete a state approved middle grade educator prep program.
  • Educators who currently hold a K-12 or Pre-K-21 teaching endorsement will be able to add a middle grade endorsement without needing to complete a state approved middle grade educator prep program.
  • Educators will be able to take coursework to add subsequent middle grade endorsements at any regionally accredited college or university in Illinois or out-of-state.
  • Beginning February 1, 2018, all new middle grade endorsements will require 24 semester hours of coursework which will include 3 semester hours of methods, plus the content area test.
  • Specific content tests have been developed in core areas for middle grade math, science, social science and language arts to be implemented during the spring of 2017.
  • Under the new middle grade endorsement structure, a General Middle Grades test will be required, in addition to the current subject area content test if the educator is seeking an endorsement outside the 4 core areas of math, science, social science or language arts
  • It is anticipated that the new General Middle Grades test will be available early spring of 2018.
  • The General Middle Grades test will be waived if the educator has taught for one year in grades 5-8.
  • The General Middle Grades test will also be waived if the educator has passed the Elementary/Middle Grade (110) test.
  • If an educator is teaching two or more subjects at the middle school, the educator needs to be fully licensed to teach in their major are of assignment and may now teach a minor area of assignment if they have taken 6 semester hours of coursework in the subject area (previously 9 hours).
  • ISBE no longer requires a Junior High or Middle School endorsement in order to teach in a departmentalized 5th grade classroom.If you have questions surrounding licensure, please do not hesitate to contact Brandi Schwanke at   brandi.schwanke@riroe.com or 309-736-1111. 

Student Loan Forgiveness: An archived webinar is available by ISBE to provide educators with the information regarding federal and state opportunities for Student Loan Forgiveness. http://isbe.net/licensure/html/webinar_archive.htm#t-2funds160518