New rules related to the pandemic on educator certification and state requirements for observing educators in practice

Due to COVID-19 social distancing requirements, educator certification testing centers have been closed for extended periods or have been operating at significantly reduced capacity, limiting the ability of educators and educator candidates to complete certification exam requirements necessary to receive certification.

To manage the impact of the public health crisis on educator certification and preparation programs, Governor Abbott  suspended certain requirements to provide flexibility for candidates, districts, and educator preparation programs for the 2020-21 school year. For more details, please see the TEA notice.

Additionally, the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) held an emergency meeting last Thursday to pass a temporary rule allowing educator preparation programs to use a virtual setting as a means to observe educator practice. Ordinarily, SBEC rules require in-person observations of a candidate’s clinical experience.