Utah Department of Administrative Services Division of Administrative Rules

Utah Administrative Code

The Utah Administrative Code is the body of all effective administrative rules as compiled and organized by the Division of Administrative Rules (see Subsection 63G-3-102(5); see also Sections 63G-3-701 and 702).

NOTE: For a list of rules that have been made effective since April 1, 2016, please see the codification segue page.

NOTE TO RULEFILING AGENCIES: Use the RTF version for submitting rule changes.


R277. Education, Administration.

Rule R277-520. Appropriate Licensing and Assignment of Teachers.

As in effect on April 1, 2016

Table of Contents

R277-520-1. Definitions.

A. "Board" means the Utah State Board of Education.

B. "Content specialist" means a licensed educator who provides instruction or specialized support for students and teachers in a school setting.

C. "Core academic subjects or areas" means English, reading or language arts, mathematics, science, foreign languages, civics and government, economics, arts, history, and geography under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), also known as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), Title IX, Part A, 20 U.S.C. 7801, Section 9101(11).

D. "Demonstrated competency" means that a teacher shall demonstrate current expertise to teach a specific class or course through the use of lines of evidence which may include completed USOE-approved course work, content test(s), or years of successful experience including evidence of student performance.

E. "Eminence" means distinguished ability in rank, in attainment of superior knowledge and skill in comparison with the generally accepted standards and achievements in the area in which the authorization is sought as provided in R277-520-5.

F. "LEA" or "local education agency" means a school district, charter school or, for purposes of this rule, the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind.

G. "Letter of authorization" means a designation given to an individual for one year, such as an out-of-state candidate or individual pursuing an alternative license, who has not completed the requirements for a Level 1, 2, or 3 license or who has not completed necessary endorsement requirements and who is employed by an LEA.

H. "Level 1 license" means a Utah professional educator license issued upon completion of an approved preparation program or an alternative preparation program, or pursuant to an agreement under the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement, to candidates who have also met all ancillary requirements established by law or rule.

I. "Level 2 license" means a Utah professional educator license issued after:

(1) satisfaction of all requirements for a Level 1 license;

(2) satisfaction of requirements under R277-522 for teachers whose employment as a Level 1 licensed educator began after January 1, 2003 in a Utah public LEA or accredited private school;

(3) at least three years of successful education experience in a Utah public LEA or accredited private school or one year of successful education experience in a Utah public LEA or accredited private school and at least three years of successful education experience in a public LEA or accredited private school outside of Utah; and

(4) satisfaction of additional requirements established by law or rule.

J. "Level 3 license" means a Utah professional educator license issued to an educator who holds a current Utah Level 2 license and has also received National Board certification or a doctorate in education or in a field related to a content area in a unit of the public education system or an accredited private school from an accredited institution, or holds a Speech-Language Pathology area of concentration and has obtained American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) certification.

K. "License areas of concentration" means designations to licenses obtained by completing an approved preparation program or an alternative preparation program in a specific area of educational studies such as Early Childhood (K-3), Elementary (K-6), Elementary 1-8, Middle (still valid, but not issued after 1988, 5-9), Secondary (6-12), Administrative/Supervisory (K-12), Career and Technical Education, School Counselor, School Psychologist, School Social Worker, Special Education (K-12), Preschool Special Education (Birth-Age 5), Communication Disorders, Speech-Language Pathologist, and Speech-Language Technician. License areas of concentration may also bear endorsements relating to subjects or specific assignments.

L. "License endorsement (endorsement)" means a specialty field or area earned through completing required course work established by the USOE or through demonstrated competency approved by the USOE; the endorsement shall be listed on the Professional Educator License indicating the specific qualification(s) of the holder.

M. "No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB)" means the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act, P.L. 107-110, Title IX, Part A, Section 9101(11).

N. "Professional staff cost program funds" means funding provided to school districts based on the percentage of a district's professional staff that is appropriately licensed in the areas in which staff members teach.

O. "SAEP" means State Approved Endorsement Program. This identifies an educator working on a professional development plan to obtain an endorsement.

P. "USOE" means the Utah State Office of Education.

R277-520-2. Authority and Purpose.

A. This rule is authorized by Utah Constitution, Article X, Section 3 which vests general control and supervision of public education in the Board, Section 53A-1-401(3) which gives the Board authority to adopt rules in accordance with its responsibilities, and Section 53A-6-104(2)(a) which authorizes the Board to rank, endorse, or classify licenses. This rule is also necessary in response to ESEA NCLB.

B. The purpose of this rule is to provide criteria for local boards to employ educators in appropriate assignments, for the Board to provide state funding to local school boards for appropriately qualified and assigned staff, and for the Board and local boards to satisfy the requirements of ESEA in order for local boards to receive federal funds.

R277-520-3. Required Licensing.

A. All teachers in public schools shall hold a Utah educator license along with appropriate areas of concentration and endorsements.

B. LEAs shall receive assistance from the USOE to the extent of resources available to have all teachers fully licensed.

C. LEAs are expected to hire teachers who are licensed or in the process of becoming fully licensed and endorsed. Failure to ensure that an educator has appropriate licensure may result in the USOE withholding all LEA funds related to salary supplements under Section 53A-17a-153 and R277-110 and educator quality under Section 53A-17a-107(2) and R277-486 until teachers are appropriately licensed pursuant to the Board's authority under Section 53A-1-401(3).

R277-520-4. Appropriate Licenses with Areas of Concentration and Endorsements.

A. An educator assigned to teach a class in kindergarten through grade 3 shall hold:

(1) a current Utah Educator License with an early childhood (k-3) license area of concentration;

(2) an elementary (k-6) license area of concentration; or

(3) for an educator assigned to teach a class in grade 1 through grade 3, an elementary (1-8) license area of concentration.

B. An educator assigned to teach a class in grade 4 through grade 8 in an elementary setting shall hold a current Utah Educator License with an elementary (k-6) or an elementary (1-8) license area of concentration.

C. An elementary content specialist in Fine Arts or Physical Education shall hold a current Utah Educator License with an elementary or secondary license area of concentration with the appropriate K-12 content endorsement.

D. An elementary content specialist in reading or English as a Second Language shall hold a current Utah Educator License with an elementary or secondary license area of concentration with the appropriate subject/content endorsement.

E. An educator assigned to teach a class in grade 6 through grade 8, including middle-level, intermediate, and junior high schools, shall hold a current Utah Educator License with an elementary (1-8) or a secondary (6-12) license area of concentration with the appropriate subject/content endorsement for all assigned courses.

F. An educator assigned to teach a class in grade 9 through grade 12 shall hold a current Utah Educator License with a secondary (6-12) or a career and technical education license area of concentration with the appropriate subject/content endorsement for all assigned courses.

G. An educator assigned to serve or teach a class of students with disabilities shall hold a current Utah Educator License with a special education (k-12) license area of concentration and, if the educator is the teacher of record of secondary mathematics for students with disabilities, shall also hold the appropriate subject/content endorsement.

H. An educator assigned to serve preschool-aged students with disabilities shall hold a current Utah Educator License with a preschool special education (birth-age 5) license area of concentration.

I. An educator assigned to provide student support services as defined in R277-506 shall hold a current Utah Educator License with the appropriate support service license area of concentration.

J. An educator assigned as a school-based or LEA-based specialist shall hold a current Utah Educator License with the appropriate license area of concentration and endorsement as defined by the LEA.

K. An educator assigned in an administrative position requiring an educator license, as defined by the district, shall hold a current Utah Educator License and an administrative/supervisory (k-12) license area of concentration.

(1) A superintendent of a school district may be licensed with a letter of authorization granted by the Board consistent with Section 53A-3-301.

(2) An educator assigned in an administrative position in a charter schools is exempt from this requirement consistent with Section 53A-1a-511.

R277-520-5. Eminence.

A. The purpose of an eminence authorization is to allow individuals with exceptional training or expertise, consistent with R277-520-1F, to teach or work in the public schools on a limited basis. Documentation of the exceptional training, skill(s) or expertise may be required by the USOE prior to the approval of the eminence authorization.

B. Teachers with an eminence authorization may teach no more than 37 percent of the regular instructional load except as provided in R277-520-5C.

C. In identified circumstances, teachers with an eminence authorization may teach more than 37 percent of the regular instructional load. An eminence authorization may be approved by the Board if:

(1) the LEA can find no other qualified individual to fill the position, then:

(a) the LEA shall submit the following documented information to the USOE annually:

(i) description;

(ii) recruitment efforts;

(iii) the qualifications of all applicants; and

(iv) the LEA's rationale for hiring the individual.

(b) the USOE shall review the information within 15 days of receipt.

(c) the USOE shall notify the individual and the LEA if the USOE approves the documented information.

(d) the LEA shall submit a request for a Letter of Authorization to the Board for the individual through normal administrative procedures; or

(2) An individual has exceptional skills, expertise, and experience that make him the primary candidate for the position, then:

(a) the LEA shall submit the following documented information to the USOE annually:

(i) information about the position;

(ii) the individual's expertise, and experience; and

(iii) the LEA's rationale for hiring the individual.

(b) the USOE shall review the information within 15 days of receipt.

(c) the USOE shall notify the individual and the LEA if the USOE approves the documented information.

(d) the LEA shall submit a request for a Letter of Authorization to the Board for the individual through normal administrative procedures.

D. LEAs shall require an individual teaching with an eminence authorization to have a criminal background check consistent with Section 53A-3-410(1) prior to employment by the LEA.

E. The LEA that employs the teacher with an eminence authorization shall determine the amount and type of professional development required of the teacher.

F. An LEA that employs teachers with eminence authorizations shall apply for renewal of the authorization(s) annually.

G. Eminence authorizations may apply to individuals without teaching licenses or to unusual and infrequent teacher situations where a license-holder is needed to teach in a subject area for which he is not endorsed, but in which he may be eminently qualified.

R277-520-6. Routes to Appropriate Endorsements for Teachers.

A. An educator may add an endorsement to an existing license area of concentration by completing the endorsement requirements established by the USOE.

B. Endorsement requirements in core academic subject areas shall include passage of the Board-approved content knowledge assessment.

C. Teachers may demonstrate competency in the subject area(s) of their teaching assignment(s) as approved by the USOE content area specialist to meet specific endorsement requirements except the Board-approved content knowledge assessment.

D. Educators shall be properly endorsed consistent with R277-520-3 or have USOE-approved SAEPs. Otherwise, the Board may withhold professional staff cost program funds pursuant to the Board's authority under Section 53A-1-401(3).

R277-520-7. Board-Approved Endorsement Program (SAEP).

A. An educator assigned to teach in a subject for which he does not hold the appropriate endorsement and who has successfully completed at least nine semester credit hours of the endorsement requirements shall be placed on an SAEP as determined by USOE specialists.

B. Individuals participating in SAEPs shall demonstrate progress toward completion of the required endorsement(s) annually, as determined jointly by the school district/charter school and the USOE.

C. An SAEP may be granted for one two-year period and may be extended by the USOE for up to two additional years if the individual has made progress towards completing the SAEP.

D. An individual currently participating in an SAEP is considered to hold the endorsement for the purposes of meeting the requirements of R277-520-4.

R277-520-8. Background Check Requirement and Withholding of State Funds for Non-Compliance.

A. Educators qualified under any provision of this rule shall also satisfy the criminal background requirement of Section 53A-3-410 prior to unsupervised access to students.

B. If LEAs do not appropriately employ and assign teachers consistent with this rule, they may have state appropriated professional staff cost program funds withheld pursuant to R277-486, Professional Staff Cost Formula pursuant to the Board's authority under Section 53A-1-401(3).

KEY

educators, licenses, assignments

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment

July 8, 2015

Notice of Continuation

May 15, 2015

Authorizing, Implemented, or Interpreted Law

Art X Sec 3; 53A-1-401(3); 53A-6-104(2)(a)


Additional Information

Contact

For questions regarding the content or application of rules under Title R277, please contact the promulgating agency (Education, Administration). A list of agencies with links to their homepages is available at http://www.utah.gov/government/agencylist.html or from http://www.rules.utah.gov/contact/agencycontacts.htm.