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New Law Eases Licensing Restrictions for Certain School Service Providers

Published on

August 2, 2019

A new law signed by Gov. Tom Wolf makes it easier for individuals with out-of-state professional licenses to work in Pennsylvania, which should be a welcome change for schools.

Act 41 of 2019, which takes effect August 30, allows individuals holding one of the 29 professional licenses managed by the Pennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs, to more easily transfer their professional license to Pennsylvania.

This new law will apply to those public school positions necessitating such a license, including nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, social work and speech-language pathology and audiology.

These professional licenses should more easily transfer so long as the requirements to obtain the out-of-state license were “substantially similar” to the licensing requirement in Pennsylvania.

This change comes as good news since many public school entities are finding it difficult to fill these positions in a tight labor market. While the law was enacted mainly for relocation purposes, Pennsylvania schools near the borders of other states may see an uptick in out-of-state applicants who can more easily transfer their credentials to Pennsylvania.

This change applies only to the professional licenses administered by the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs. The certification process for teachers, including those relocating from out-of-state, remains with the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

If anyone has any questions concerning the new law, please contact any member of the Barley Snyder Education Practice Group.

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