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105 ILCS 5/21B-50

    (105 ILCS 5/21B-50)
    Sec. 21B-50. Alternative educator licensure program.
    (a) There is established an alternative educator licensure program, to be known as the Alternative Educator Licensure Program for Teachers.
    (b) The Alternative Educator Licensure Program for Teachers may be offered by a recognized institution approved to offer educator preparation programs by the State Board of Education, in consultation with the State Educator Preparation and Licensure Board.
    The program shall be comprised of 4 phases:
        (1) A course of study that at a minimum includes
    
instructional planning; instructional strategies, including special education, reading, and English language learning; classroom management; and the assessment of students and use of data to drive instruction.
        (2) A year of residency, which is a candidate's
    
assignment to a full-time teaching position or as a co-teacher for one full school year. An individual must hold an Educator License with Stipulations with an alternative provisional educator endorsement in order to enter the residency and must complete additional program requirements that address required State and national standards, pass the assessment of professional teaching before entering the second residency year, as required under phase (3) of this subsection (b), and be recommended by the principal or qualified equivalent of a principal, as required under subsection (d) of this Section, and the program coordinator to continue with the second year of the residency.
        (3) A second year of residency, which shall include
    
the candidate's assignment to a full-time teaching position for one school year. The candidate must be assigned an experienced teacher to act as a mentor and coach the candidate through the second year of residency.
        (4) A comprehensive assessment of the candidate's
    
teaching effectiveness, as evaluated by the principal or qualified equivalent of a principal, as required under subsection (d) of this Section, and the program coordinator, at the end of the second year of residency. If there is disagreement between the 2 evaluators about the candidate's teaching effectiveness, the candidate may complete one additional year of residency teaching under a professional development plan developed by the principal or qualified equivalent and the preparation program. At the completion of the third year, a candidate must have positive evaluations and a recommendation for full licensure from both the principal or qualified equivalent and the program coordinator or no Professional Educator License shall be issued.
    Successful completion of the program shall be deemed to satisfy any other practice or student teaching and content matter requirements established by law.
    (c) An alternative provisional educator endorsement on an Educator License with Stipulations is valid for 2 years of teaching in the public schools, including without limitation a preschool educational program under Section 2-3.71 of this Code or charter school, or in a State-recognized nonpublic school in which the chief administrator is required to have the licensure necessary to be a principal in a public school in this State and in which a majority of the teachers are required to have the licensure necessary to be instructors in a public school in this State, but may be renewed for a third year if needed to complete the Alternative Educator Licensure Program for Teachers. The endorsement shall be issued only once to an individual who meets all of the following requirements:
        (1) Has graduated from a regionally accredited
    
college or university with a bachelor's degree or higher.
        (2) Has a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or
    
greater on a 4.0 scale or its equivalent on another scale.
        (3) Has completed a major in the content area if
    
seeking a middle or secondary level endorsement or, if seeking an early childhood, elementary, or special education endorsement, has completed a major in the content area of reading, English/language arts, mathematics, or one of the sciences. If the individual does not have a major in a content area for any level of teaching, he or she must submit transcripts to the State Board of Education to be reviewed for equivalency.
        (4) Has successfully completed phase (1) of
    
subsection (b) of this Section.
        (5) Has passed a test of basic skills and content
    
area test required for the specific endorsement for admission into the program, as required under Section 21B-30 of this Code.
    A candidate possessing the alternative provisional educator endorsement may receive a salary, benefits, and any other terms of employment offered to teachers in the school who are members of an exclusive bargaining representative, if any, but a school is not required to provide these benefits during the years of residency if the candidate is serving only as a co-teacher. If the candidate is serving as the teacher of record, the candidate must receive a salary, benefits, and any other terms of employment. Residency experiences must not be counted towards tenure.
    (d) The recognized institution offering the Alternative Educator Licensure Program for Teachers must partner with a school district, including without limitation a preschool educational program under Section 2-3.71 of this Code or charter school, or a State-recognized, nonpublic school in this State in which the chief administrator is required to have the licensure necessary to be a principal in a public school in this State and in which a majority of the teachers are required to have the licensure necessary to be instructors in a public school in this State. A recognized institution that partners with a public school district administering a preschool educational program under Section 2-3.71 of this Code must require a principal to recommend or evaluate candidates in the program. A recognized institution that partners with an eligible entity administering a preschool educational program under Section 2-3.71 of this Code and that is not a public school district must require a principal or qualified equivalent of a principal to recommend or evaluate candidates in the program. The program presented for approval by the State Board of Education must demonstrate the supports that are to be provided to assist the provisional teacher during the 2-year residency period. These supports must provide additional contact hours with mentors during the first year of residency.
    (e) Upon completion of the 4 phases outlined in subsection (b) of this Section and all assessments required under Section 21B-30 of this Code, an individual shall receive a Professional Educator License.
    (f) The State Board of Education, in consultation with the State Educator Preparation and Licensure Board, may adopt such rules as may be necessary to establish and implement the Alternative Educator Licensure Program for Teachers.
(Source: P.A. 99-58, eff. 7-16-15; 100-596, eff. 7-1-18; 100-822, eff. 1-1-19.)