Alabama Teacher Certification Renewal Options

Certification renewal is a requirement for any educator who wishes to continue teaching in the state of Alabama. The possible options for renewal vary, depending on which certification the individual holds. Schools offering Early Childhood Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Certification Renewal Options for Alabama Teachers

In Alabama, there are five general certifications or licenses that an educator can hold. These are a Substitute License, Professional Educator Certificate, Professional Leadership Certificate, Career and Technical Certificate, and Speech-Language Pathology Assistant Certificate. The relevant application forms and verification documents for each type of certificate can be found on the Alabama State Department of Education website. The general requirements for certificate renewal are summarized in the table below.

Education/Experience Required Trained teacher or Previous holder of a valid certificate
Exam Requirements Varies based on certification
Certification Renewal Period Five years (standard certification)
Requirements for Renewal Submission of required documents and a non-refundable $30 application fee
Average Salary (2019) $53,195 (teachers in AL)*
Estimated Job Growth (2016-2026) 8% (teachers nationally)**

Sources: *Salary.com; **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Substitute License

A substitute license lasts for five years and cannot be renewed. An individual who holds a substitute license must instead petition the school to which they are employed to apply for a new license once the old one has expired.

Professional Educator Certificate

To renew a Professional Educator Certificate, a candidate must satisfy certain requirements regarding coursework, professional work experience and clock hours of professional development. All achievements must be verified through the submission of the relevant forms or certificates. The application forms and corresponding verification documentation along with the non-refundable $30 application fee must be submitted to the Educator Certification Section of the Alabama State Department of Education while the certificate is still valid.

Professional Leader Certificate

To renew a Professional Leader Certificate, a candidate must satisfy the requirements regarding Professional Learning Units (PLUs). The educator must have the relevant documents to verify the completion of their PLUs in order to complete the application process. The application forms and corresponding verification documentation along with the non-refundable $30 application fee must be submitted to the Educator Certification Section of the Alabama State Department of Education while the certificate is still valid.

Career and Technical Certificate

There are certain certificates under this category that cannot be renewed, such as the Level 1 certificate in Technical Education. The full list can be found on the relevant application form. To renew the other certificates under this program, certain work experience criteria must be met. The application forms and corresponding verification documentation along with the non-refundable $30 application fee must be submitted to the Educator Certification Section of the Alabama State Department of Education while the certificate is still valid.

Speech-Language Pathology Assistant Certificate

To renew a Speech-Language Pathology Assistant Certificate, a candidate must satisfy certain requirements dealing with work experience and coursework. The application forms and corresponding verification documentation along with the non-refundable $30 application fee must be submitted to the Educator Certification Section of the Alabama State Department of Education while the certificate is still valid.

Application Forms and Documents

The application forms, renewal requirements and details regarding the application process for each certificate or license discussed above are available online at the Alabama State Department of Education website. It is important to note which applications the candidate can submit to the Educator Certification Section directly and which applications must be submitted by an employing Alabama county/city superintendent.

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