Comment sought on emergency education certificates

State education officials are encouraging public comment on an expansion of the issuance of emergency certificates to include administrative and teacher certificates, as well as proposed regulation changes to the state’s assessment and accountability system.

The State Board of Education and Early Development expressed its concern on Dec. 5 over difficulty school districts are having in filling all of their vacant positions with fully qualified educators. Districts have reported over 200 unfilled certified vacancies on their 2019 First Day Certified Vacancy Report.

The regulation, as proposed, would repeal the current emergency Type C regulation and replace it with a new regulation to provide a process for local school boards to follow to request an emergency certificate from the commissioner for administrative, teacher and special services positions. If that passed an emergency certificate would be valid for the remainder of the school year in which it was issued. The certificate would not be renewable and the local school board would be required to provide a mentor for the person issued an emergency certificate.

The board also is seeking public comment on proposed regulation changes to update participant guidelines, requirements and deadlines in Alaska’s statewide assessments and accountability system.

The board’s Dec. 4 meeting packet and 2020 board meeting schedule are online at education.alaska.gov/State_Board.