Decision on proposed teacher licensing changes delayed to Nov. 23

The deadline for Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Jim Mortenson’s rule report on proposed changes to teacher licensure and required pedagogical standards has been extended to Wednesday, November 23, according to a notice published by the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings.

While the rule report initially faced an October 20 deadline (tomorrow), the “complexity” of the rulemaking record warranted the extension, continued the notice.

After a seven-hour public hearing on August 24, 455 comments (mostly in opposition to the proposed rules) were uploaded through the Office of Administrative Hearing’s online portal. The notice acknowledged that the proposed “rules generated extensive public comments addressing numerous proposed rule parts.”

Gov. Tim Walz’s Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) is requesting Judge Mortenson sign off on licensing rule changes that include requiring aspiring educators to “demonstrate” divisive concepts in their licensure program coursework.

American Experiment believes there is conflict between the proposed rules and state law, and is hopeful Judge Mortenson will reject the proposed draft rules and indicate that PELSB cannot adopt them as they are currently written.

Proposed language includes:

  • “The teacher understands multiple theories of race and ethnicity, including but not limited to racial formation, processes of racialization, and intersectionality.”
  • “The teacher understands how ethno-centrism, eurocentrism, deficit-based teaching, and white supremacy undermine pedagogical equity.”
  • “The teacher understands that knowledge of creation, ways of knowing, and teaching are social and cultural practices shaped by race and ethnicity, often resulting in racially disparate advantages and disadvantages.”
  • “The teacher understands the impact of the intersection of race and ethnicity with other forms of difference, including class, gender, sexuality, religion, national origin, immigration status, language, ability, and age.”
  • “The teacher creates opportunities for students to learn about power, privilege, intersectionality, and systemic oppression in the context of various communities and empowers learners to be agents of social change to promote equity.”
  • “The teacher understands how prejudice, discrimination, and racism operates at the interpersonal, intergroup, and institutional levels.”
  • “The teacher assesses how their biases, perceptions, and academic training may affect their teaching practice and perpetuate oppressive systems and utilizes tools to mitigate their own behavior to disrupt oppressive systems.”