Resources and Reminders for 2021 License Renewal

With April now in full swing, many educators around Illinois are making plans to round out the school year on a high note. At the same time, Illinois’ teachers shouldn’t forget about another important professional process that they may need to take part in before the next school year begins – state license renewal.

The Illinois State Board of Education opened the window for this year’s license renewal cycle on April 1, 2021. While Illinois teachers are not required to renew every year, many will need to go through the process this year, depending on when they first earned or previously renewed their license. Educators looking to start the process can visit ISBE’s renewal portal for information on how to login and upload relevant credential materials.

As always, the Learning Technology Center is here to support Illinois educators as they work to maintain their certified status. Throughout the year, we offer a variety of in-person, virtual, and self-guided professional development options – many of which can be counted as licensure PD credit. Read on to learn about some of our current PD resources that can help you round out your license renewal application in no time.

Deadlines & Need-to-Knows

Here are a few of the deadlines and need-to-know details that you should keep in mind heading into this year’s teacher license renewal process:

  • Illinois educators may begin applying for licensure renewal on April 1, 2021
  • All Illinois Professional Educator Licenses (PEL) must be renewed by August 31, 2021
  • No license cycle extensions due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic will be offered this year (as was offered in 2020)
  • PEL with teaching endorsement renewal still requires 120 hours of documented PD, as well a fee ($10 for one year or $50 for a five-year cycle)
  • PEL with administration endorsement renewal still requires 100 hours of documented PD, 1 Admin Academy (AA) credit per fiscal year, and a fee ($10 for one year or $50 for a five-year cycle)

Has Anything Changed for 2021?

In 2020, some one-time changes were made to the ISBE educator license renewal process (including license extensions) to account for education system disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While that pandemic is still ongoing, ISBE is now transitioning back to its regular licensure renewal process for 2021.

As such, current educators should follow ISBE’s standard renewal process if they wish to remain certified by the state. Answers to specific questions pertaining to the 2021 renewal process can be found here.

Professional Development Resources for Educators

Professional development is a key part of Illinois’ educator license renewal process. Those seeking renewal can satisfy their licenses’ professional development requirements through a few different channels, including in-service learning, mentoring, online courses, webinars, and more.

In particular, many educators today are opting to make edtech part of their personal professional development plans. If you’re looking to learn more about the latest education-centered digital learning tools and earn some PD credit along the way, consider checking out some of these free LTC resources:

LTC Online Courses

Fitting PD into your busy schedule can be challenging, especially if you are balancing a remote or hybrid teaching schedule. Fortunately, the LTC offers a variety of free online courses that can easily slot into your schedule. With courses covering topics ranging from Google Forms and Google Drive to Microsoft Teams and Keynote for Mac, you’re sure to learn something new from these carefully curated, self-guided lessons.

All of the LTC’s online courses can be started at any time. However, current class offerings will close on May 31, 2021. Learn more about some of our most popular courses here.

LTC Webinar Series

Throughout the year, the LTC hosts webinars on some of the most popular and pertinent edtech topics. That includes sessions on everything from Jamboard and flipped classroom basics to 3D printing and Makerspaces. Live attendees at these webinars are often awarded PD credit, so don’t miss these chances to learn something new from the LTC’s team of edtech experts.

Customized In-District Professional Development

As a statewide leader in educational technology professional development, the LTC offers educational institutions across Illinois an opportunity to host workshops, courses, and more with the support of our team of regional coordinators. Schools and districts can choose from an existing catalogue of offered courses or work with our team to create a new training geared specifically toward your faculty’s needs.

The LTC’s in-district PD comes at a great bargain, too. As a program of the Illinois State Board of Education, many of our in-district PD opportunities are offered at little to no cost.

Interested in learning more? Visit our “In-District Workshops” page or contact your local Regional Educational Technology Coordinator.

Professional Development Resources for Administrators

In addition to professional development credit, those seeking to renew their Illinois educator license as an administrator will need to also obtain 1 Administrator Academy (AA) credit. AA courses are offered by a variety of organizations in Illinois and can help administrators learn new skills and knowledge relevant to their leadership position.

The LTC’s team of Regional Educational Technology Coordinators (RETCs) can help bring an Admin Academy course to your institution or local Regional Office of Education office. Contact your local RETC to learn more.

Admin Academies are also offered by several other prominent Illinois educational organizations, including the Illinois Principals Association (IPA) and the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents of Schools (IARSS). Check out their websites to learn more about their upcoming offerings.

More Resources for Illinois Educator License Renewal

The Illinois State Board of Education has also put together a collection of useful resources geared towards educators seeking license renewal support. You can also find many of these over on ISBE’s license renewal hub:

ISBE has also created several video guides to help educators navigate the renewal process and associated online platform:

Your local Regional Office of Education (ROE) or Intermediate Service Center (ISC) can also be a great resource while working through your educator license renewal. To learn more about your local ROE or ISC’s services or to find your closest ROE or ISC, check out ISBE’s interactive ROE and ISC map.

Summer 2021 Google Level 2 Certification Test Prep Cohort

Reserve your spot today and join a Google Level 2 cohort! In this cohort, we will break down the Google Educator Level 2 exam into smaller workshops while preparing you to pass the Goole Level 2 Certification Exam. Each session will cover different Google apps, including Gmail, Slides, and Drawings; Scholar, Books, Google Arts, and Culture; Earth and Maps; Sites and Blogger; YouTube and Classroom; Keep and Trends.

Level 2 certification indicates that an educator is able to successfully integrate a wider range of Google for Education tools and other technologies in order to transform teaching practices. Educators who pass the certification test (not included) will be able to advertise their status with a personal certificate and badge. Certification lasts 36 months.

This cohort, cohosted by Lisa Schwartz and Holly Kelly, will meet virtually every other week on Wednesdays from 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM (see below for dates and times). Don’t miss this chance to learn, make new friends, and grow professionally as a part of this exciting Google Level 2 cohort! The Cohort will provide a total of 8 PD hours. PD hours will be provided after each individual session. If you are unable to attend one of the sessions, the sessions will be recorded and shared with those that register (PD hours will not be issued for the individual session missed).

**If you would like more information about apps covered on the exam, please visit Google’s training site: https://edu.google.com/teacher-center/certifications/educator-level2/?modal_active=none

Dates:
Week 1: Wednesday, July 7, 9:00 AM – 11: 00 AM
Week 2: Wednesday, July 14, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Week 3: Wednesday, July 21, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Week 4: Wednesday, July 28, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Tech Networking Meeting

Area technology coordinators and directors will discuss shared experiences, questions, and ideas. Their contributions and concerns will drive the conversation.

Tech Networking Meeting

Area technology coordinators and directors will discuss shared experiences, questions, and ideas. Their contributions and concerns will drive the conversation.

Creating Engaging Learning Experiences for Your Students with Google Tools

Google’s suite of education-centered apps and services have many uses that allow us to create an interactive and engaging learning experience for our students. When used to the fullest, our students can use the Google tools to explore content, as well as create and curate digital artifacts that demonstrate what they know, think, feel, and understand.

In this session, we will explore both how to create new activities and transform existing ones into engaging learning experiences using the full Google Workspace, including: Slides, Forms, Sheets, Drawings, and MyMaps. There is far more to using Google in the classroom than simply sharing a Google Doc with your students. Join us to learn more! Participants should bring a Chromebook or laptop to the workshop.

Let’s Get Google Certified! Educator Level 1 Prep Workshop ROE 35

The Level 1 Certification workshop will prepare participants to take the Google Educator Level 1 certification exam. Level 1 certification indicates a fundamental understanding of using Google Tools in the classroom and confirms standard technology implementation skills. This workshop is designed for teachers that have a solid base of implementing the Google tools in their classroom and is not designed as an introduction to the Google tools. Participants who attend this session and wish to take the test will be provided with a voucher (a $10 value) to take the exam! Educators who pass the certification test will be able to advertise their status with a personalized certificate and badge. Certification lasts 36 months. Participants should bring a Chromebook or laptop to the workshop.

Creating Interactive Learning Experiences for Your Students with Google ROE 28

Google’s suite of education centered apps and services have many uses that allow educators to create an interactive learning experience for our students. When used to the fullest, our students can use the Google tools to explore content, as well as create and curate digital artifacts that demonstrate what they know, think, feel, and understand.

In this session, we will explore both how to create new activities and transform existing ones into interactive learning experiences using the full Google Workspace collection, including: Slides, Forms, Sheets, Drawings, and MyMaps. There is far more to using Google in the classroom than simply sharing a Google Doc with your students. Join us to learn more! Participants should bring a Chromebook or laptop to the workshop.

Let’s Get Google Certified! Educator Level 1 Prep Workshop ROE 28

The Level 1 Certification workshop will prepare participants to take the Google Educator Level 1 certification exam. Level 1 certification indicates a fundamental understanding of using Google Tools in the classroom and confirms standard technology implementation skills. This workshop is designed for teachers that have a solid base of implementing the Google tools in their classroom and is not designed as an introduction to the Google tools. Participants who attend this session and wish to take the test will be provided with a voucher (a $10 value) to take the exam! Educators who pass the certification test will be able to advertise their status with a personalized certificate and badge. Certification lasts 36 months. Participants should bring a Chromebook or laptop to the workshop.

Illinois Ed Tech Coaches Meeting

Join instructional technology coaches from around the state to share best practices and network with like-minded individuals. Anyone involved or interested in educational technology – including teachers, administrators, and technology specialists – is welcome to join.

How to Become a Google Certified Coach

Google’s Certified Coach program empowers coaches to work 1:1 with educators and drive impactful technology use in their schools. Join Nicole Zumpano to learn more about the process and requirements to become certified and learn how the LTC can help you in this journey.