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Tennessee Teacher Requirements for Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists

The information below is collected from state regulatory agencies responsible for regulating school based speech-language pathologists and/or audiologists. The information is reviewed on an annual basis. Please be advised that laws, regulations, and policies may change at any time, so always check with your state for the most up-to-date information.

Audiologist and Speech-Language Pathologist

School Speech-Language Pathologist

Candidates seeking licensure and endorsement as a school speech-language pathologist must complete a program of studies in speech-language pathology at the graduate level prior to obtaining the practitioner school services personnel license. Candidates must meet the licensure standards, employment standards, and assessment requirements of the State Board. Candidates applying for a professional school services personnel license as a school speech-language pathologist shall satisfy one of the following criteria:

  1. Applicants new to the field seeking initial school service personnel licensure must complete a graduate degree in speech-language pathology from a state or regionally accredited institution of higher education with a speech-language graduate level program approved by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. They must also achieve a qualifying score on the assessment required by the State Board. Fully licensed teachers who are serving on employment standard waivers as speech-language teachers shall meet these requirements to be licensed as a school speech-language pathologist;
  1. Speech-language pathologists who hold a valid license issued by Tennessee or an out-of-state licensing Board of Communication Disorders and Sciences or who hold the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language Hearing Association may be issued the professional school services personnel license upon application. There are no additional requirements;
  1. Speech-language teachers who have a graduate degree or master’s equivalence in speech-language pathology and hold a valid Tennessee teacher license with a speech-language endorsement may be issued the professional school service personnel license upon application; or
  1. Speech-language pathologists who have a graduate degree in speech-language pathology and hold a valid out-of-state educational credential issued before September 1, 2000, may be issued the professional school services personnel license upon application. Applicants with valid credentials issue

Citation: Tennessee State Board of Education Educator Licensure Policy 5.502 [PDF]

Practitioner School Service Personnel License

Initial Three-year License

  • Completion of a preparation program approved by the State Board of Education, leading to endorsement as a speech-language pathologist or audiologist.
  • Qualifying scores on the state required licensure assessment
  • The practitioner school service personnel license may be renewed once.

Citation: Tennessee State Board of Education Educator Licensure Policy 5.502 [PDF]

Professional School Service Personnel License

Six-year License

  • Meet licensure expectations at the practitioner level as a speech-language pathologist or audiologist.
  • The professional school service personnel license is renewable.

License Advancement or Renewal

Practitioner School Service Personnel License

At the end of the validity period of the initial practitioner license, if the educator has not met licensure expectations, the practitioner license may be renewed once. If the educator has not met licensure expectations at the end of the second validity period, the license will become inactive.

Professional School Service Personnel License

At the end of the validity period of the professional 6 license, if the educator has met licensure expectations, the license will be renewed. If the educator has not met licensure expectations, the license will become inactive.

Continuing Education Requirement

Educators must earn a total of thirty (30) professional development points (PDPs) to advance or a total of sixty (60) PDPs to renew a teacher license including professional, professional occupational, and professional school services personnel licenses. PDPs must be approved in the state licensure system. Individuals employed by a local education agency (LEA) must have the LEA approve the accrued PDPs for advancement or renewal. At the time of advancement or renewal, if the educator is NOT employed in a Tennessee public school, appropriate documentation for all activities for which PDPs are requested must be provided to the office of educator licensing and preparation. Reasons for PDP denial include, but are not limited to: activity not related to improving educator effectiveness; activity conducted outside the validity period of the license (effective dates); activity lacks adequate documentation; or duplicate activity. At the time of advancement or renewal, if the educator is employed in a Tennessee public school, the local education agency (LEA) must retain documentation for each completed activity for which the educator is awarded PDPs.

Board Oversight

Tennessee Department of Education Licensing

Resources

For further information on laws and regulations for school based speech-language pathologists and audiologists, please visit these websites:

Questions regarding state advocacy issues? Call ASHA at 800-498-2071 and ask for the State Advocacy Team.

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