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Louisiana Teacher Certification Renewal

Certified teachers in Louisiana need to maintain certain standards to keep their credentials. Find out what you need to hold on to your teaching certificate, and what to do if it lapses or expires during your teaching career.

Overview of Teacher Certification Renewal in Louisiana

Most of the time, renewing your credentials in Louisiana is as simple as ensuring that you remain an active teacher. If you have a lapse in employment, however, you'll need to take continuing education courses to reinstate yourself as a certified teacher.

Certification Validity Five years for initial certificate
Certification Extension Three years
Credits Required for ReinstatementSix continuing education credits
Average Louisiana Salary (2018)*$50,540 for kindergarten teachers
$48,740 for elementary school teachers
$49,960 for middle school teachers
$51,810 for high school teachers
Job Growth (2016-2026)*8% for kindergarten teachers
7% for elementary school teachers
8% for middle school and high school teachers

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Initial Certification

Before renewing a teacher certification in Louisiana, you'll need to make sure you have properly earned your initial credentials. Traditionally, you'll earn a bachelor's degree in your preferred grade level. You can choose from early childhood (preschool through third grade), elementary education (grades 1-5), middle school education (grades 4-8), or a subject area in secondary education. You could also major in art or music education. After completing your student teaching experience, you'll take the appropriate Praxis exams. Testing requirements vary according to your chosen area of study. Once you complete your degree program and pass your exams, you are eligible to apply for Louisiana's standard teaching certificate.

Certification Renewal

After five years, your teaching certificate will be eligible for renewal. All you need to do to keep your credentials valid is actively teach on a regular basis and then submit a request to have your certificate renewed. This will allow you to keep your certificate active for three years. The school district that employs you will make the formal request for renewal. This cycle will repeat every three years following.

Renewing a Lapsed Certificate

Louisiana defines a certificate as lapsed if, during a five-year period, you go through 90 days or an academic semester without teaching. If this occurs, your teaching credentials will be revoked, and you will need to go through several steps to renew your certificate. First, you'll need to take a total of six continuing education credits at an approved university or college. Make sure you obtain official transcripts to prove your attendance at each class. If you have multiple certifications, you can take courses in any of your specialty areas. You have one year from the lapsing of your certificate to complete the six credit hours. You'll need to submit a fee of $25 to cover the cost of reinstating your lapsed certificate and submit an update packet through Louisiana's website.

Renewing an Expired Certificate

A teaching certificate will expire once the valid period is over. If you haven't taken a break during your teaching career, you can ask your employing school district to grant you a three-year renewal through the submission of the update packet. You'll have to pay the same $25 fee as you would if you were reinstating a lapsed certificate. For those with a level 2 or level 3 certificate, an extension also requires the completion of 150 professional continuing education hours. Without these in place, you won't be able to gain your certificate back.