Beginning August 1, 2015 new and existing professional educators will be able to apply for and update their North Carolina licenses online. Instructions and more information are available within the online licensure system.

Go to the new NCDPI Online Licensure System



Professional Educator's Licensure Categories

Standard Professional 1 (SP1) Professional Educator's Licenses are intended for teachers with 0-2 years of teaching experience, and are valid for three years. To be issued a SP1 Professional Educator's License, an individual must have:

  • completed a state approved teacher education program from a regionally accredited college or university, or
  • completed another state's approved alternative route to licensure, met the federal requirements to be designated as "Highly Qualified," and earned a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college.
    1. Praxis II Testing - for middle grades (6-9), secondary (9-12), K-12 (except Exceptional Children: General Curriculum) license areas.
    2. Pearson Test for North Carolina: Foundations of Reading and General Curriculum (effective October 1, 2014) - for Elementary Education and Exceptional Children: General Curriculum licenses only.

Standard Professional 2 (SP2) Professional Educator's Licenses are intended for teachers with 3 or more years of teaching experience, and are valid for five years. Teachers who are fully licensed and "Highly Qualified" in another state who have three or more years of teaching experience in another state AND who meet NC State Board of Education approved licensure exam requirements OR have National Board Certification are issued the SP2 Professional Educator's license.

Further information on "Highly Qualified" teachers can be found beginning on page 19 of the NCLB Toolkit for Teachers.



By following our step-by-step instructions, you will be on your way toward joining North Carolina's dynamic team of professional educators in our public schools. Please note that North Carolina does NOT have 100% Reciprocity with any state. You MUST complete each step below.

Step 1. Complete Form A - Application for a North Carolina Professional Educator's License (pdf, 27kb or doc, 52kb)

Step 2. Provide:

Your license from another state.

  • Include a copy of the front and back, with the code key.
  • It must be clear and legible.


Complete Form V - Verification of completion of an approved Teacher Education Program (pdf, 17kb or doc, 49kb)

  • Form V is required if you have a graduate degree in education, or if you think there may be any question about the areas listed on your certificates or licenses.
  • This needs to be completed by the recommending official (licensure officer or dean of education) at the institution where the approved education program was completed.

Step 3. Transcripts

  • Submit ORIGINAL, DEGREE DATED transcripts for each of your degrees and any coursework you have completed not listed on your transcript (community college or post-degree credits.)
  • Grade reports and computer-generated copies are not acceptable.
  • Official transcripts for coursework being used for HQ ("Highly Qualified") purposes must be included with the application.

Step 4. Test Scores or Form OS-HQ - Verification of "Highly Qualified" Status (pdf, 27kb or doc, 44kb)

  • State approved test scores (legible, unaltered copies) for North Carolina or another state that granted you a license, should be provided if you have taken one or more of these tests or if they were required for your out-of-state license.
  • If you do not have subject area testing completed for your licensure areas please submit form OS-HQ. Information on your HQ status should include an official description of how the HQ was acquired. Verification of HQ status written by the applicant will not be accepted.

Step 5. Form E - Verification of K-12 Teaching Experience (pdf, 27kb or doc, 69kb)

  • This form needs to be completed if you have prior K-12 teaching experience, one for each former employer.
  • Part A is used for verifying professional educator experience.
  • Part B is used for verifying Instructional Teaching Assistant experience.


Complete Form CE - Verification of Post Secondary (College) Educator experience (pdf, 25kb or doc, 61kb)

Step 6. International Verification - If you have earned a degree from another country:

Provide an evaluation from an international education evaluation service with a copy of a current work authorization visa, permanent resident card or US passport. Note: For degrees earned abroad, the transcripts must be evaluated for US equilvalency by an education evaluation agency.

Step 7. Notes, Payment and Mailing Instructions

  • Do not use highlighters of any color on your documents. Highlighted information is blacked out and unreadable by our digital scanning system. Highlighted documents may be returned to you.
  • Incomplete application packages will be returned.
  • Include a stamped, self-addressed envelope if you want your application materials returned.
  • Processing fees are non-refundable.
  • You may pay by personal check, money order, or certified check made payable to the Department of Public Instruction. You may also pay by Visa or MasterCard. If you wish to pay by credit card, fill out the credit card payment form (pdf, 56kb).
  • If payment is refused for processing fees paid by check or by credit card, any professional educator's license that has been processed will become null and void.
  • Mail the completed forms, supporting materials and the appropriate processing fee (pdf, 20kb) to:

    NC Department of Public Instruction
    Licensure Section
    6365 Mail Service Center
    Raleigh NC 27699-6365