UMD admits to glitch preventing grads from getting teaching licenses

The University of Minnesota-Duluth admitted to a glitch in the system which has left a group of fresh grads fighting to get their teaching licenses.

These recent grads are the first cohort to go through the UMD program hat essentially allows them to graduate with two teaching licenses. Despite the quick demand for half these students to land jobs, apparently, none of them are working.

Not wanting to jeopardize her budding career the student who spoke to Fox 9 wished to remain anonymous. She was supposed to start her new job as a full- time Special Education teacher on Jan. 5, but can't.

On Jan. 8, she received this e-mail from the Dean of College of Education and Human Service Professions at UMD about an apparent "glitch in the licensure process as it concerns to the integrated Elementary Special Education program."

"I'm frustrated," the student said. "I'm hoping I can still have my job. Obviously there is thoughts of losing my first job before I even started it."

The Executive Director of the Board of Teaching said prior to getting students in the loop, they've been working on this for a few weeks along with licensing office and the university.

While we're told it's not uncommon for it to take a couple weeks to process teacher licenses for new grads, they are still waiting on some paperwork from UMD and referred any questions about the so-called "glitch" to them.

A spokesperson for the university confirmed the glitch but hasn't elaborated.

"It was a huge blessing and relief to have a job before I technically graduated, and it was such excitement, and to not be able to start now and deal with all these correspondences between multiple people is a big frustration," she said.

She's just one of 24 in the group of students affected. She knows of 12 currently having to postpone new jobs.

Late Tuesday night, another email to those students said UMD is working on limited licenses with priority given to those with job offers, but it still could take two weeks.

"I hate how I have to leave my employer hanging," she said. "It's very unprofessional of me to say I have no idea when I can start, and i feel like UMD doesn't understand that."

She still considers herself fortunate, because she has her parents helping her through the ordeal, but even a couple a weeks without her full-time pay has her concerned about scheduled student loan payments due in about six months.

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