(a) Complete jurisdiction over the issuance and administration of licenses for supervisors, principals and public school teachers for kindergarten through grade twelve (K-12), including teachers in preschools operated under the authority of chapter 6, part 1 of this title, shall be vested in the state board of education.
(b) The licenses shall be uniform for all the school systems in the state.
(c) The state board of education is authorized, empowered and directed to set up rules and regulations governing the issuance of licenses for supervisors, principals and public school teachers. These rules and regulations shall prescribe standards controlling the issuance and renewal of all licenses and permits; provided, that:
(1) If a license is issued, it shall not be to an applicant who has less than four (4) years of general or technical and professional training beyond the twelfth grade;
(2) No increase in the minimum requirements for licenses shall become effective until at least one (1) year after promulgation of the increase by the state board of education;
(3) Vocational or trades teachers shall be certified on the basis of qualifications prescribed in the state plan for vocational education prepared by the state board for vocational education and approved by the United States department of education; and
(4) Active or retired military personnel who seek to serve as junior reserve officers’ training corps (JROTC) instructors shall be licensed to teach JROTC and military science in grades nine through twelve (9-12) based on documented military JROTC certification issued upon successful completion of all JROTC preparation requirements specific to the person’s branch of military service. JROTC instructors so licensed shall not be licensed to teach courses other than JROTC and military science, and LEAs shall not employ persons licensed only as JROTC instructors to teach courses other than JROTC or military science. Such restrictions to licensure, however, shall not impinge the granting of state-approved equivalency credits received through a JROTC or military science course.
(d) (1) The state board of education has the authority to promulgate rules and regulations prescribing minimum standards for licenses and certificates differing from the requirements prescribed in this chapter.
(2) The state board of education is authorized to establish guidelines, through the promulgation of rules and regulations in accordance with the Uniform Administrative Procedures Act, compiled in title 4, chapter 5, to suspend, deny or revoke the license or certificate of a teacher who is delinquent or in default on a repayment or service obligation under a guaranteed student loan, identified in § 63-1-141(a), or if the teacher has failed to enter into a payment plan or comply with a payment plan previously approved by TSAC or a guarantee agency.
(e) The department of education shall encourage institutions with authorized teacher training programs to evaluate all the teacher training programs to assure that persons seeking licensure in this state will have had appropriate instruction in the teaching of reading.
(f) (1) The state board of education, with the assistance of the department of education and the Tennessee higher education commission, shall develop a report card or assessment on the effectiveness of teacher training programs. The state board of education shall annually evaluate performance of each institution of higher education providing an approved program of teacher training and other state board approved teacher training programs. The assessment shall focus on the performance of each institution’s graduates and shall include, but not be limited to, the following areas:
(A) Placement and retention rates;
(B) Performance on PRAXIS examinations or other tests used to identify teacher preparedness; and
(C) Teacher effect data created pursuant to § 49-1-606.
(2) Each teacher training institution and each LEA shall report all data as requested by the state board of education that the board needs to make the evaluation. The report card or assessment shall be issued no later than November 1 of each year.
[Acts 1951, ch. 58, §§ 1, 2, 7 (Williams, §§ 2365.5, 2365.6, 2365.11); modified; Acts 1959, ch. 121, § 1; 1967, ch. 255, § 1; 1974, ch. 654, §§ 56-59; 1975, ch. 64, § 1; 1978, ch. 675, § 2; 1981, ch. 172, § 2; T.C.A. (orig. ed.), §§ 49-1235 – 49-1237; Acts 1985, ch. 233, § 1; 1987, ch. 308, § 19; 1990, ch. 948, § 14; 1993, ch. 32, §§ 38-40; 1999, ch. 476, § 3; 2005, ch. 299, § 1; 2006, ch. 655, § 1; 2007, ch. 376, § 9.]