If you have a Bachelors degree with at least 24 credit hours in a
core subject area from an accredited college or university, you may be
able to begin teaching immediately as a Lateral Entry teacher. As a
lateral entry teacher, you will receive full salary and benefits while
you complete additional college courses to receive teacher
certification. At least six semester hours of the outline coursework
must be taken each school year and you are allowed 3 years to complete
Below you will find the conditions necessary to become a lateral
entry teacher. Printable resources as well as weblinks are also
available below if you need more information.
N.C. Lateral Entry Teacher Requirements
• The applicant and the employing school system must submit a joint application to the Licensure Section.
• Individuals licensed through lateral entry must complete an
approved education program in their area of licensure at a college or
university or through a Regional Alternative Licensing Center (RALC).
The college or RALC evaluates the individual’s credentials and outlines
the coursework necessary to earn a clear license. Successful teaching
experience can substitute for the student teaching requirement.
• An initial Lateral Entry license is valid for three school
years. A minimum of six semester hours of the outlined coursework must
be completed each school year. Lateral Entry employees must meet all
program requirements within three years.
• Lateral Entry employees must earn the required score on the
designated Praxis Series specialty area test(s) or subject assessment
test(s) before the end of their third year of employment.
(Exception: Praxis tests must be passed before employment can
take place in the areas of Elementary Education and Special Education
based on No Child Left Behind regulations.)
• Lateral Entry license holders are subject to all regulations
that apply to other beginning teachers in North Carolina. They must
successfully complete three years of teaching in the Initial Licensure
Program before their licenses can be converted from lateral entry to a
clear Standard Professional II license. Lateral Entry employees retain
initial status throughout the entire period during which they complete
academic and testing requirements.
• Individuals entering public school service through Lateral
Entry must complete a two week training course prior to service in the
schools or submit evidence of equivalent training. The required training
may include effective teaching methods, classroom management and
discipline procedures, and an orientation to local school policies and
• For a Lateral Entry license to remain valid, the holder must
meet the testing and progressive credit requirements within the
three-year limit whether or not he or she continues to be employed in
North Carolina school system.
For more information:
to link directly to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction to learn more.