Will DPI contact me when my license is about to expire?
No. We expect that since it is your professional license, you will keep track of the date when it expires. If you are unsure and have lost your license certificate, you can easily view your license history using our license database search function.
My five-year license expires on June 30, 2005 . How do I renew the license?
In order to renew your license you will need to send in the PI-1602-5R application and evidence of completing the professional growth requirement. (Exception: Special Education Aides and School Occupational or Physical Therapists/Assistants are exempt from the professional growth requirement and should renew using a PI-1602-PA and PI-1602-NP application respectively.) Submit the application, fee, notarized conduct and competency review form, and original transcripts or grade reports (on the original paper) and/or 1681 clock hour forms to our Milwaukee processing center: DPI-Teacher Licensing, Drawer 794, Milwaukee , WI 53293-0794 .
When should I submit an application to renew my license that is expiring June 30, 2005 ?
We do NOT allow you to apply for renewal for the upcoming school year before January 1st of the year the license expires, but do expect that you will apply by September 1st at the latest. Although you do not need to apply before June 30th the course work required for renewal must be completed by 6/30/05 . We do suggest that if you want to get your license by the start of the next school year that you will need to send in a complete application by June 30th. Submit your application materials with original transcripts or grade reports (on the original paper) and/or 1681 clock hour forms as soon as possible after completing the course work.
I want to renew my teaching license a year early. Can I do that?
We do not allow people to renew their license(s) early UNLESS they are also adding an initial license in another area (see following question).
I currently hold a five-year teaching license that is valid until 2005. I also recently finished a new certification program. Do I have to renew my license now to have the new area added?
No, you can wait until 2005 to submit the renewal application for your existing license. To be licensed in the new teaching or pupil services area, submit an application and fee for an Initial Wisconsin license, either a PI-1602-IS form for graduates of Wisconsin programs or a PI-1602-OS form for graduates of non-Wisconsin programs. Then in 2005 when your existing licenses expire, you will need to submit a separate PI-1602-5R - five-year renewal application and fee. However, if you would rather have all licenses on the same renewal cycle, you may renew your existing license early (at the same time that you submit the Initial Wisconsin application). Credits you earned for the new certification can be used to meet the professional growth requirement for renewing your current license. Remember that you will still need to submit two separate applications and pay two fees.
Is there a deadline by which I must submit my application for renewal?
Yes, we hope that you will apply for renewal of your five-year license no later than September 1st of the year it expires, but we will accept applications that arrive later IF the course work was completed within the last licensing period (by June 30th). Technically you will be unlicensed until the new license is issued, but the law states that once we receive the application you are covered if you made a "timely and sufficient application for renewal of a license" as "the existing license does not expire until the application has been finally acted upon" by DPI [Chap 227.51 (2), Wis. Stats.] However, we will NOT backdate the license if the application arrives over one year after the June 30th license expiration date.
I let my five-year teaching license lapse. How do I renew that license?
You will need to reapply for another five-year license (using the PI-1602-5R form) with evidence of completing six credits (or the equivalent) in the five years preceding the start date of the new license. If you don't have the renewal credits finished AND you have not been out of teaching for five or more years, you may request a one-year extension while you complete the credits necessary for another five year license. If you don't have the renewal credits and you have been out of teaching for more than five-years, a school district will have to request (on school letterhead from a principal, superintendent, district administrator or the human resources office) a one-year license on your behalf. Include that letter when you mail your completed application materials to DPI.
I had a life license that was issued in 1976, but I have been out of teaching since 1995. Is my life license still valid?
No, your life license becomes invalid if for five or more years you are not working in the teaching profession. You can revalidate that license with the completion of six semester credits (or the equivalent) of refresher work (course work in your content area or related to education in general). In the meantime, you could apply for a substitute license without any credits that would allow you to do long-term substitute teaching in the area(s) in which you were licensed and short-term substitute teaching in everything else. If you have already been hired and do not have the six credits of refresher work done, your school district could request a one-year non-renewable license on your behalf so that you can get the credits done (note: credits must be done by the end of that one-year license period - June 30th).
My five-year teaching license expires in 2006 but I will also be finishing a program for licensure as a principal in 2005 I want both licenses on the same renewal cycle. Can I do that?
Yes, IF you are adding a new license you can use the credits completed for the new license to also renew your five-year teaching license (one-year early). Both licenses would then start in 2005. If you aren't planning on working as an administrator right away, it may be in your best interest to wait until 2006 (when the teaching license expires) to apply for both the initial and renewal at the same time. In either case two applications and two fees will be required. You must send in both the PI-1602-5R - five-year renewal application and fee (be sure to attach original transcripts and/or clock hour forms for course work earned since this license was last issued) and a separate application and fee for the initial principal license (PI-1602-AD for graduates of Wisconsin programs or PI 1602-OS for graduates of non-Wisconsin programs). The same process and application forms would be used if you were adding a different type of administrative license (superintendent, director of pupil services, etc) OR a reading teacher/reading specialist license.
I need to take 6 credits for my five-year license renewal. Will any course I take automatically work?
No, if renewing under the Semester Credit option (see next question about Equivalency Clock Hour option) we expect that you will take semester credit course work (or quarter credits that can be converted to semester credits) at an accredited baccalaureate or graduate degree granting college/university. You do not have to do course work at a Wisconsin college/university, but do make sure that the college is accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. You can check the accreditation of a particular institution at the DOE Office of Postsecondary Institutions website. Credits completed at a two-year UW system campus are also acceptable. Independent study, correspondence, or Internet courses offered for semester credit by an accredited institution will also meet our requirement. You can take classes at either the undergraduate or graduate level. We expect that the course work will be directly and substantively related to one or more of the licenses you hold, or is related to your professional competence. You do NOT need to get our approval before you take a course IF it meets the above criteria.
I've heard that there is an Equivalency Clock Hour - ECH option (also called DPI clock hours) that also works for renewal of my license. How does that work?
Instead of taking six semester credits for renewal of your license(s), you also had the option of completing non-credit DPI approved workshops or seminars prior to July 1, 2004 . Every 30 hours of equivalency clock hours counts the same as one semester credit. Consequently, you would need to have accumulated 180 clock hours by attending workshops, seminars, conferences, and/or in-service programs to meet the entire requirement (read the next question about using a combination of semester credits and equivalency clock hours for renewal). In these equivalency clock hour situations, agencies submitted a workshop/seminar proposal to DPI for approval. (NOTE: DPI no longer approves programs for equivalency clock hours.) After you completed the workshop/seminar, you were given a PI-1681 - Verification of Equivalency Clock Hour worksheet to fill out and use when renewing your license.
I heard that the equivalency clock hour option is going away. Is that true?
Yes. Effective July 1, 2004, there are no more DPI-approved clock hour workshops offered, but course work/DPI clock hours earned prior to June 30, 2004 (if within the applicant's previous 5-year licensing period) can still be used for the next license renewal. The last licenses for which clock hours can be used to meet the professional growth requirement will be those with a begin date of July 1, 2008 .
What if I took semester credits AND equivalency clock hour workshops and seminars? Is there a way to use both for my next renewal?
Yes, for renewals with a new license begin date of July 1, 2008 or earlier, you may use a combination of credits and clock hours. You just have to make sure that in the end you have the equivalent of six semester credits. Remember that every 30 hours of DPI approved equivalency clock hours completed prior to July 1, 2004 is equal to one credit. For example, if you took a two semester credit course you would also need to have taken 120 clock hours (equal to 4 semester credits) to meet the renewal requirements. You can use any combination of semester credits and equivalency clock hours as long as in the end you have the equivalent to 6 semester credits.
What if I took a course(s) at a technical college? Is that allowed?
Wisconsin Technical College System Schools are not baccalaureate degree-granting institutions; therefore, credits earned in courses offered by those institutions are not acceptable for license renewal under the semester credit option unless accepted for transfer to a four-year accredited institution. In the past, Wisconsin Technical College System credits were accepted for license renewal using the Equivalency Clock Hour option. To use this option, the Registrar at the technical college must convert the credit you received there into DPI-approved equivalency clock hours. The credits must have been completed prior to July 1, 2004 . The registrar can either write a letter that explains the conversion or write the number of DPI clock hours on the transcript itself and sign it.
I've heard that there are new license renewal requirements. How do the new requirements work?
We are changing our renewal process under PI 34. For those professionals whose licenses expire June 30, 2006 , 2007 or 2008, DPI is developing, in collaboration with local school districts and the new license renewal support centers, an option to renew licensure by successfully completing a professional development plan instead of completing 6 credits of continuing education. The new system is based on the Wisconsin Standards with demonstrated knowledge, skills and dispositions for teaching, pupil services, and administration. (For more information see the PDP documents developed by the PI 34 Implementation Work Teams.) However, those teachers, administrators, and pupil service personnel who were licensed under the "old" 6 credit renewal system can EITHER continue to renew in the same way as in past years OR move into the new Professional Development Plan system.
My license expires on June 30, 2005. I took credits in 1999. Do these count for the renewal of this license?
No, the credits/clock hours that you use for renewal must be completed in the five-year period PRECEDING the start date of the new license. In other words, since your new license will start on 7/1/05 your renewal credits must be taken between 7/1/2000 and 6/30/2005 .
The coursework I completed won't be on a transcript until after my license expires. Should I apply for a one-year extension in the meantime?
No, the one-year extension should only be used if you have not met the credit requirement. In fact, applying for the one-year extension when you don't need it will only slow down the processing of your application. See the next question for more information.
I don't have the credits required for my five-year renewal completed. What do I do?
IF you have not already had a one-year extension with your last five-year license, you may apply for the extension and complete all course work requirements by the date that one-year license expires. However, if you have already used up this one-year extension option, you are only eligible for a five-year substitute license until you complete the entire renewal credit requirement. Either way, you must submit a completed PI-1602-5R application form to request either the one-year extension or a five-year substitute license.
I am licensed as a social studies teacher and as an administrator. Am I required to take 12 credits (6 semester credits for each area) to renew both licenses?
No, we only require one "set" of six semester credits (or 180 Equivalency Clock Hours) for renewal.