Teacher Certification, Licensure, Contracting, and Rights”


Any person intending to teach in a public school in the United States must have a license to teach. In Mississippi, licensing is different from other states and that demands teachers from other states intending to teach in this state to apply for a new license using their former licensing documentations. Every state has a different set of requirements that graduate teachers need to meet to be licensed. In Mississippi, requirements are mainly focused on the content of the subject to be taught and assessments are made using customized tests. Teacher certification on the other hand is the award given to teachers that have met the new teaching standards set by the government/professional organization (Murnane, Singer, Kemple, & Olsen, 2009, p. 16-18; Teaching Certification.com, 2016; Wright, 2017). Therefore, in the United States, all teachers must be licensed to teach and not every teacher has been certified (Torpey, 2016).

A Summary of Laws and Regulations related to Teacher licensure in Mississippi

The laws and regulations ensure that all public school teachers are licensed and these licensed are renewed after every five years. Only teachers that have been trained from reputable training institutions (within the region) are eligible for licensure and those teachers from other states that have maintained their licensure can be licensed to teach in Mississippi. For new applicants, they need to pass their customized tests. New applications and renewals can be done electronically and supporting documents, which may include certifications, are submitted together with an application (Teaching Certification.com, 2016; Wright, 2017).

Contracting and employment obligations of Unlicensed Teachers at Anola-Hennepin Independent School District according to Title 37: Chapter 9, of 2013 Mississippi Code

The state considers it unlawful for any unlicensed teacher to be contracted to serve or teach in any public school. However, a graduate from a recognized training program may be contracted (on certain conditions) by a school board to teach before the time when licenses are issued. If such a teacher fails to be issued with a license, that contract is canceled and the final pay withheld (Justia, 2018). Under the contract law, unlicensed teachers do not have any contractual rights once a contract is discontinued (Anoka-Hennepin Independent School District, n.d).


Anoka-Hennepin Independent School District (n.d). Working agreement by and between July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2007. Retrievedhttps://www.dol.gov/olms/regs/compliance/cba/pdf/cbrp0207.pdf.

Justia (2018). 2013 Mississippi Code: Title 37- Education: Chapter 9- District superintendents, principals, teachers, and other employees in general: § 37-9-7- Employment of unlicensed superintendent, principal or teacher; conditional contracts; expiration of license during term of contract. Retrieved< https://law.justia.com/codes/mississippi/2013/title-37/chapter-9/in-general/section-37-9-7/>.

Murnane, R., Singer, J. D., Kemple, J. & Olsen, R. (2009). Who will teach? Policies that matter: Who prepares to teach? New York: Harvard University Press.

Teaching Certification.com (2016). Alternative teaching certification in Mississippi. Retrievedcom/teaching/mississippi-alternative-teaching-certification.html”>http://www.teaching-certification.com/teaching/mississippi-alternative-teaching-certification.html.

Torpey, E. (2016). Will I need a license or certification for my job? Retrieved< https://www.bls.gov/careeroutlook/2016/article/will-i-need-a-license-or-certification.htm>.

Wright, C. (2017). Licensure guidelines K-12. Retrievedgov/ACCode/00000398c.pdf”>http://www.sos.ms.gov/ACCode/00000398c.pdf.

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