State board recommends changes to teacher licensing

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois State Board of Education has approved proposals to expand the teacher workforce.

The board voted this week to seek legislative changes to make it less cumbersome for qualified professionals to move into teaching careers.

The recommendations stem from a yearlong study involving focus groups, data analysis and research review. The findings were released last month in the Teach Illinois report .

Proposals for changes in law fall in three areas. One would be creating alternative routes based on job experience to licensing substitute teachers, bilingual educators and those changing careers.

Another would be removing the requirement of a test of basic skills for initial licensure or endorsements for those who have a qualified bachelor's degree. And mentoring support programs for experienced teachers and principals would be expanded.

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