Beginning the Process for Educator's License

By following our step-by-step instructions to submit an application, you will be on your way toward joining North Carolina's dynamic team of professional educators in our public schools.

Initial Professional License (IPL)

Initial Professional License (IPL)

The IPL may be issued to:

  • PreK - 12 teachers with fewer than 3 years of experience
  • PreK - 12 teachers with 3 or more years of experience who do not qualify for the CPL
  • Student Services Personnel and Administrators who have not met testing requirements

Step 1.  Completion of an approved education preparation program

  • Alternative route programs that lead to licensure must be verified by letter from the state's department of education or licensing board where the approved route was completed

Step 2.  Obtain the following official documents to be uploaded into your online application:

  • Degree-dated transcripts - bachelor's, master's, and all other post-secondary studies
  • Licensure content area examination(s) - if applicable
  • Valid and current educator's license from another state if held
  • Verification by Institution:  Completion of Approved Education Program (Form V)
  • Forms
    • Form V
    • Experience request forms for previous work
      • PreK-12 teaching/teacher's assistant (Form E)
      • Post-secondary (Form CE),
      • Non-teaching (Form NE),
      • Military Instructor or Leadership (Form ME)
        • Have each different employer complete and sign a separate form 
        • Review requirements for experience credit on each form prior to submitting the application

Step 3.  Register for or log into your account at the NCDPI Online License System and apply for a license.

  • Upload all requested documentation into the online application for licensure.

Step 4.  Pay the required non-refundable/non-transferrable licensure fee with a valid credit card.

Convert an IPL to a CPL

Convert an IPL to a CPL

To convert an Initial Professional License to a Continuing Professional License, an educator must have completed at least three years of teaching experience (either in North Carolina or verified experience from another state) and pass all NCSBE-approved, or comparable, licensure exams required for the license area(s).

Comparability of licensure tests is established as follows:

  1. The out-of-state applicant has taken a licensure exam(s) which satisfies one component of the licensure process in that State at the time the exam(s) was taken.
     
  2. The out-of-state applicant must meet, or exceed the test developer's recommended passing score regardless of the state's official passing score.
Continuing Professional License (CPL)

Continuing Professional License (CPL)

The CPL may be issued to:

  • PreK - 12 teachers with 3 or more years of teaching experience and: 
    • NCSBE tests required for NC educator preparation program completers, or
    • Comparable exams and effectiveness data from another state where a current license is held for out-of-state approved educator preparation program completers.
  • Student Services Personnel who have passing NC licensure exam scores or comparable licensure tests from another state for out-of-state approved educator preparation program completers.
  • Administrators with passing NC testing requirements (if applicable).

Step 1.  Completion of an approved education preparation or alternative route educator licensure program 

Step 2.  Obtain the following official documents to be uploaded into your online application:

  • Degree-dated transcripts - bachelor's, master's, and all other post-secondary studies
  • Valid and current educator's license from another state 
  • Licensure content area exam scores for NC's required rest(s) or comparable tests from other states may qualify out-of-state CPL applicants (except administrators)
  • Educator Effectiveness Data from another state (including student growth, where applicable and documentation/links for the effectiveness model that generates the effectiveness rating.)
    • If effectiveness data is not provided with your NC CPL application you may only qualify for the IPL. 
    • Effectiveness data example - a final official signed (by both the supervising school official and NC license applicant) summative performance evaluation from the state where you were employed with current licensure and a link to the definition of the model leading to the performance rating.
  • Forms
    • Form V or verification letter of alternative route programs that lead to licensure from the state's department of education or licensing board where the approved route was completed
    • Experience request forms for previous work
      • PreK-12 teaching/teacher's assistant (Form E)
      • Post-secondary (Form CE),
      • Non-teaching (Form NE),
      • Military Instructor or Leadership (Form ME)
        • Have each different employer complete and sign a separate form 
        • Review requirements for experience credit on each form prior to submitting the application

Step 3.  Register for an account or login to the NCDPI Online License System and apply for a license.

  • Upload all requested documentation into the online application for licensure.

Step 4.  Pay the required non-refundable/non-transferrable licensure fee with a valid credit card

    Alternate Routes to North Carolina Professional Educator's License

    Alternate Routes to North Carolina Professional Educator's License

    Residency License 

    • Requires employment in NC public schools and enrollment in NC approved educator preparation program
    • All Residency License applications must be submitted via the NCDPI Online Licensure system by an NC employing school system

    Emergency License and Permit to Teach

    • Requires employment in NC public schools
    • All applications for Emergency Licenses and Permits to Teach applications must be submitted via the NCDPI Online Licensure system by an NC employing school system.
    Career and Technical Education (CTE) Professional Educator's License

    Career and Technical Education (CTE) Professional Educator's License

    The purpose of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Licensure Policies and Procedures Manual is to assist with determining requirements for the initial licensing of educators through the CTE Provisional License restricted route.  CTE Provisional License restricted licensure requires educators to qualify for a license based on a related degree and work experience for the CTE program areas.

    All CTE Provisional License restricted route applications must be submitted into the NCDPI Online Licensure System by an NC employing school system.

    Associated Files