Carolina and N.C. State are launching a joint online program for people who have been hired to teach in N.C. schools but haven’t yet been fully certified to work in classrooms.

The program is intended to help the state address its widening teacher shortage by providing a new avenue for lateral-entry teachers to gain licensure. Lateral-entry teachers are people who have content knowledge who have been hired to fill teaching vacancies but lack a teaching license.

“We expect that this new initiative will bring to bear strengths of our two campuses in helping the state of North Carolina address a critical need,” said Fouad Abd-El-Khalick, dean of UNC’s School of Education. “This initiative will help improve learning for tens of thousands of school students across the state.”

The program, to be offered completely online, will be open to lateral-entry teachers in the fall. It will be offered in a partnership with D2L, a company that provides online platforms for university courses and has experience establishing and maintaining online competency-based education programs.

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