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Educator Licensure


Transitional Bilingual Educator Endorsement on an Educator License with Stipulations


(Updated January, 2014)

Educators should apply for an educator license with stipulations (ELS) endorsed as a transitional bilingual educator. This license is valid for five full fiscal years for teaching subject matter using the languages of endorsement in approved bilingual education programs in grades PK-12 of the common schools. This license is nonrenewable. The ELS must be registered with the regional superintendent of the county wherein the holder is teaching or where the holder is living if he/she is not currently teaching.

Requirements of Prior Education or Licensure



The applicant must:
  1. Have possessed within five years prior to the date of application a valid teaching certificate or comparable legal authorization issued by a foreign country or by a state or possession or territory of the United States, or

  2. Hold a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution of higher education in the United States or a degree from an institution of higher learning in a foreign country which the Licensure Board determines to be the equivalent of a bachelor's degree from a recognized institution of higher learning in the United States. The applicant must submit a certified transcript from the foreign institution. The State Superintendent of Education will determine equivalency by comparing the applicants' courses of study to that required for a bachelor's degree from a recognized institution of higher learning in the United States on factors including:

    1. the applicants' length of study at the foreign institution (which shall be equivalent to four years of postsecondary study after the age of eighteen);
    2. the number of credit hours or similar units of instruction which the applicants have successfully completed (which shall be the equivalent of 120 semester hours);
    3. the content of the applicants' courses and the distribution of courses among the various disciplines constituting a bachelor's degree program in the United States (which shall include the equivalent of a 32-semester-hour major field of study);
    4. the applicants' grades or similar evidence of successful academic performance;
    5. the foreign institution's accreditation status, if any.

Language Requirements


  1. The applicant must demonstrate adequate speaking, reading, writing, and grammar skills in a non-English language in which transitional bilingual education is offered in Illinois. This requirement may be fulfilled in one of the following ways:

      1. The applicant presents evidence of having graduated from a teacher preparation institution or an institution of higher education in which the medium of instruction was a non-English language in which transitional bilingual education is offered in Illinois and for which licensure is sought.

      2. The applicant successfully completes the required test in the non-English language in which transitional bilingual education is offered in Illinois and for which licensure is sought. If no test for transitional bilingual education in the target language is provided in the list of available bilingual proficiency tests, the required test shall be another test administered by the State Board of Education. The selection, development, and administration of each test shall conform to the requirements of the Illinois Administrative Rules to the extent feasible in light of the rate of incidence of the target language in Illinois.

  2. The applicant must demonstrate adequate speaking, reading, writing, and grammar skills in English. This requirement may be fulfilled in one of the following ways:

      1. The applicant presents evidence of having graduated from an institution of higher education in which the medium of instruction was English.
      2. The applicant successfully completes the English Language Proficiency Test.