To become a teacher in Louisiana, potential educators must complete a variety of educational and certification requirements as defined by the state. As a teacher in Louisiana, you are generally required to earn a bachelor's degree in education or a related field. You must also complete a state-approved teacher preparation program and complete supervised student teaching.
Additionally, potential educators must pass all required testing in order to earn certification to teach in the state. If you have completed your education out of state, you may be able to earn certification in the state of Louisiana by completing all of the educational requirements, earning passing scores on all required testing, and applying for a new Louisiana license.
Areas of Specialization for Teachers in Louisiana
In addition to applying for an initial teaching license, it's also important for you to decide what grade level you would like to teach. Certification is offered in a variety of grade levels including:
- Early Childhood (grades Pre-kindergarten-3)
- Elementary Education (grades 1-5)
- Middle School Education (grades 4-8)
- Secondary Education (Grades 6-12)
- All Grades (Grades K-12)
Many educators also choose to focus on a specialty. Possibilities include:
- Vocational Education
- Educational Leadership
- Academically Gifted Education
And if you want to teach in highly specialized areas, you may need to complete additional educational requirements in order to earn specialized endorsements. The state of Louisiana issues three levels of teaching certification:
- Individuals who apply for licensure must first apply for the Level 1 Professional Certificate which is valid for three years.
- The Level 2 Professional Certificate is valid for five years and can be earned by working as a teacher for three years and passing the Louisiana Teacher Assistance and Assessment Program (LaTAAP).
- The Level 3 Professional Certificate is available for teachers who already have a Level 1 or Level 2 certificate, at least five years of experience, and a master's degree. More information about how to earn a teaching credential in Louisiana can be found on the state's Department of Education website.
Louisiana Teaching Licensing Requirements
The usual first steps to become licensed to teach in Louisiana are earning a bachelor's degree in education and completing a state-approved teacher preparation program. There are also many undergraduate teacher preparation programs that can allow you to earn your bachelor's degree while completing a teacher preparation program. Regardless of which path is chosen choose, all students are required to complete a state-approved teacher preparation program and supervised student teaching.
You must also earn a passing grade on the Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test and Praxis II Subject Assessment test.
Although fingerprinting is not required, potential educators may be required to give fingerprints and undergo a background check when they apply for employment with a public or private school system.
Out-of-state Educators in Louisiana
Out-of-state educators who wish to earn certificate to teach in Louisiana have two different options to choose from:
- The Level 1 Professional Certificate, which is a three-year license. This license is for individuals who have passed Louisiana's assessment tests.
- The Out-Of-State Certificate, which is also a three-year license. This one is not renewable, and is only for people who have not passed the state assessment tests.
For more information on how out-of-state educators can earn a license to teach in the state, visit the Louisiana Department of Education website.
Alternate Pathways to Teaching in Louisiana
Students who have a bachelor's degree in a subject other than education can still become a teacher in Louisiana by completing Alternate Teacher Preparation as defined by the state. There are three alternate teacher preparation programs available: the Practitioner Teacher Program, the Master's Degree Program, and the Certification-Only Program. Each of these programs was created in order to combat a shortage of teachers in the state and can lead to a Louisiana teacher's certification upon completion. More information about these alternate routes can be found on the Louisiana Department of Education website.
- "Certification" and "Alternate Teacher Preparation," Louisiana Department of Education, https://www.louisianabelieves.com/teaching/certification
- "Types of Teaching Authorizations and Certifications," Louisiana Department of Education, https://www.louisianabelieves.com/teaching
- Teach Louisiana, Louisiana Department of Education, https://www.teachlouisiana.net/