What Is Teacher Certification Reciprocity?
Teacher reciprocity simply means getting certified to teach in another state. A teacher certified to teach math in one state can often get certified to teach math in another state by filling out an online application. Every state is a little different but filling out an application, uploading a current teaching license, sending transcripts, maybe getting fingerprints, and paying an application fee are the most common requirements.
Reciprocity is a somewhat misleading term, as it is often interpreted as meaning that a teaching license issued in one state will be recognized by another state unconditionally. While most states provide reciprocity guidelines, licensure is not automatic. Teachers must apply for a new license if they are looking to teach in a state where they are not currently licensed, and the teacher licensing agency for a given state typically reviews requests for teaching certificate reciprocity on a case-by-case basis.
In practice, then, teaching license reciprocity outlines which qualifications each state will accept from another state, and which qualifications it will not. The good news for educators is that while the process may be complicated, states that have teaching certification reciprocity agreements usually allow educators to move from one state to another additional time to fulfill the new state’s requirements while teaching on a temporary or provisional license.