The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction requires that all North Carolina public school teachers hold a license in the subject area or grade span they teach. Visit the DPI website for more information about licensure, and to learn how to obtain your NC Professional Educator's License.
Lateral entry is a process that allows individuals with a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university to begin teaching immediately as they work toward obtaining their North Carolina teaching license.
- Step 1: Determine Eligibility
- Step 2: Obtain Employment Offer
- Step 3: Determine Pathway to NC Teaching License
- Step 4: Fulfill Pathway
- Step 5: Become a NC Licensed Teacher
- Frequently Asked Questions
In order to qualify for a lateral entry teacher's license, applicants must have a degree from a regionally accredited college or university, as well as:
- A relevant degree, 24 semesters of coursework in the core area, or a passing score on an approved licensure exam for the teaching area; AND
- A 2.5 GPA, five years of relevant experience, or a combination of standardized test scores and college GPA.
Read this for more information on lateral entry qualification requirements.
Lateral entry candidates must apply for and be offered a job in a North Carolina public school system before they can begin the process of obtaining a lateral entry teaching license.
View a list of our openings here.
Once a lateral entry candidate is hired by a North Carolina public school, they must meet with a lateral entry specialist in their district to determine what must be done to qualify for a North Carolina teachers license. This pathway is determined by the NC Department of Public Instruction, and includes a combination of college courses and tests the individual must pass.
Will the district pay for my expenses (coursework, testing, etc.) to become a lateral entry teacher?
Not at this time. All expenses are paid by the applicant.
How long do I have to complete all the requirements to receive a lateral entry license?
Three years. Applicants must attempt to pass the Pearson/Praxis by the end of their first year of teaching, and must pass it by the end of the following year. All coursework must be completed by the end of their third year.
NCLB Highly Qualified Teachers
Visit the NCDPI website for more information about how to become a NCLB Highly Qualified Teacher.
Master's Degree Programs from Institutions of Higher Education (IHE)Rowan Salisbury School System does not have the authority to approve these programs nor does the state (or our system) have a listing of approved programs. The Licensure Division of the NC Department of Public Instruction has provided the following guidelines:
The Master’s Degree requirements must meet the same criteria as traditional programs.
The IHE offering the program must be a regionally accredited IHE.
The program of study must be a state-approved program that will lead to licensure in the state where the IHE is based.
North Carolina must issue a license in that area.
It is the individual’s responsibility to verify ALL of the above guidelines with the IHE.
Whatever program of study you choose or IHE you choose, it is strongly suggested that you receive answers to all the above guidelines in writing from the IHE before you begin a program.