Verifying Years of Service
Procedures for verifying years of service for employers outside the United States
The Educator Excellence division is responsible for effectively implementing the Commissioner's Rules on Creditable Years of Service. The division will receive a request for a review of a service record for salary increment purposes either by mail, phone, fax, or e-mail.
I. Receive request
Once the request is received, the Texas Education Agency will review the service record request information and make a decision on whether or not the applicant qualifies for years of service for salary increment purposes under TEA rules (19 TAC §153.1021). The applicant must send the necessary forms to the previous employers not located within the United States. The service record request to the Texas Education Agency must include the following:
- Service Record Form (FIN-115) or a similar form containing the same information.
- Verification of Accreditation Status Form; and
College Verification Form(s)
if employed by a college or university. (Part-time, full-time, or both depending on the employment status with the college or university)
II. If the previous employer is a statutorily recognized accredited institution:
[Accrediting agency is listed under Title 19, Part 2, Chap.153, §153.1021 (a)(15)]
If all forms are completed correctly and the previous employer was a public school, college or university or a private school, college or university accredited by a recognized accrediting agency listed in subsection (a)(15) of the Commissioner’s Rules on Creditable Years of Service, the records will be analyzed and a decision will be made.
If credit is claimed from a public school, college or university from outside of the United States, all required documents must be validated by the Department of Education of that country (i.e. the Department of Education Official stamp must be included on all documents).
If credit is claimed from a private school, college or university from outside of the United States, and the entity has been accredited by a recognized accrediting organization listed under (a)(15) of the rules, all required documents must be validated by the private school (i.e. the private school official stamp must be included on all documents).
III. If the previous employer is not a statutorily recognized accredited institution:
[Accrediting agency is NOT listed under Title 19, Part 2, Chap.153, §153.1021 (a)(15)]
If all forms are completed correctly and the former employer was a private school, college or university, and the Verification of Accreditation Status states that the school was accredited by the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority of that country, the following additional steps must be taken:
The teacher/requestor must contact the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority of that country to request a letter, on Department of Education or Higher Education Authority letterhead stating the following:
1- The name of the school, college or university
3- Public or private status:
4- The institution’s accreditation status with the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority of that country.
5- The years of accreditation (From/To);
6- Official signature with the name and title of the public official signing the letter;
7- The official stamp of The Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority;
8- Contact information of the public official for future communication to include a phone number, fax number and email address;
9- A copy of the rules, regulations, and standards concerning the accreditation procedures between the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority and the private schools or colleges and universities of that country. The rules, regulations, and standards must be provided in the official language of the foreign country and an official English translation.
a) The Texas Education Agency (TEA) only recognizes the accreditation status of a foreign school granted by that country’s Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority and not by a third party organization merely recognized by the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority.
b) The accreditation process must be a function conducted by the Department of Education or the higher Education Authority of the foreign country.
c) TEA will not accept the process through which the school has been recognized, licensed, affiliated, approved, incorporated, nor given a permit to operate. Please refer to the Commissioner’s Rules on Creditable Years of Service, 19 TAC §153.1021 (h) (13) (E).
d) It is the responsibility of the school district to maintain a copy of the applicant’s entire service record.
It is the responsibility of the foreign country to provide relevant, credible, and accurate information before any credit is given.
For additional questions or concerns, please contact:
Joseph W. Mezher
TITLE 19, PART 2, CH 153, SUBCHAPTER CC, §153.1021 (a)
(a) Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this section, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
(1) Accredited institution--A public or private elementary, secondary, or post-secondary institution whose education program has been evaluated and deemed accredited by a state department of education or recognized regional accrediting agency.
(2) Charter school--A charter school that has been authorized to operate under the Texas Education Code (TEC), Chapter 12, Subchapter D or E.
(3) Assignment--Refers to the actual duties a person has with a school district or other educational entity.
(4) Authorized leave--Leave granted under the state's former minimum sick leave program, leave granted under the state's current minimum personal leave program (which includes physical assault leave), or any leave granted under a local leave policy for which the employee is paid as if on regular duty.
(5) Certificate--A document issued by the State Board for Educator Certification authorizing the holder to teach in the public elementary and secondary schools of Texas.
(6) Certified--Status of a person who holds a valid Texas teaching certificate.
(7) Contractual year--The employment period between July 1 and the following June 30.
(8) Current valid certificate--A certificate that is or was valid at a given time, including the stipulation that after June 30, 1986, a Texas certificate is valid only if the certified person has successfully passed either the Texas Examination of Current Administrators and Teachers or the Examination for Certification of Educators in Texas.
(9) Faculty status--Employment by a college or university as a member of the professional administrative or instructional staff, not as a graduate assistant, an assistant instructor, or an instructor on a fellowship.
(10) Full-time employment--Employment for 100% of an institution's normal work schedule.
(11) Full-time equivalency--The amount of time required of a staff member to perform a less than full-time assignment divided by the amount of time required in performing a corresponding full-time assignment. Full-time equivalency of assignment usually is expressed as a decimal fraction to the nearest tenth.
(12) Minimum salary--The minimum salary a teacher, full-time librarian, full-time counselor, or full-time school nurse must be paid as prescribed in TEC, Chapter 21.
(13) Part-time employment--Employment for less than 100% of an institution's normal work schedule.
(14) Professional personnel--Teachers, full-time librarians, full-time counselors, full-time school nurses, other employees who are required to hold a certificate issued under TEC, Chapter 21, Subchapter B, and any other personnel reported by a school district to the Public Education Information Management System with a "professional" role-id.
(15) Regional accrediting agency--The recognized regional accrediting agencies are:
(A) Southern Association of Colleges and Schools;
(B) Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools;
(C) North Central Association of Colleges and Schools;
(D) New England Association of Schools and Colleges;
(E) Western Association of Schools and Colleges;
(F) Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges;
(G) Commission on International and Trans-regional Accreditation;
(H) International Baccalaureate Organization;
(I) European Council of International Schools/Council of International Schools; and
(J) National Council for Private School Accreditation.
(16) Salary increments--Increases in salary granted for teaching or work experience.
(17) School nurse--An educator employed to provide full-time nursing and health care services and who meets all the requirements to practice as a registered nurse (RN) pursuant to the Nursing Practice Act and the rules and regulations relating to professional nurse education, licensure, and practice, and who has been issued a license to practice professional nursing in Texas.
(18) Service--A term of employment measured in school years in an entity in which the employment is recognized for salary increment purposes.
(19) State school--A school that is funded by legislative action in the appropriations act. These schools include the Texas School for the Blind, the Texas School for the Deaf, and schools under the jurisdiction of the Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation and the Texas Youth Commission.
(20) Substitute teacher--A certified teacher who works on call, does not have a full-time assignment, and provides instruction.
(21) Teacher service record--The official document used to record years of service and days used and accumulated under the states former minimum sick leave program or the state's current personal leave program.
TITLE 19, PART 2, CH 153, SUBCHAPTER CC, §153.1021 (g)
(g) Entities recognized for years of service. Service in any of the entities listed in this subsection shall be recognized for professional personnel. The minimum employment requirements in subsection
(f) of this section must be met. Requirements concerning service in each type of entity in subsection (h) of this section must also be met. Professional service in the following entities is creditable:
(1) Texas public elementary and secondary schools, including charter schools;
(2) State regional education service centers;
(3) State departments of education;
(4) Texas Department of Corrections--Windham Schools;
(5) Public elementary and secondary schools in all other states in the United States or within the boundaries of any of its territorial possessions;
(6) Overseas schools operated by the U.S. Government;
(7) Texas public or private colleges or universities;
(8) Texas private elementary and secondary schools;
(9) Texas non-public special education contract schools;
(10) Texas Department of State Health Services (formerly the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation)--state hospitals and state schools;
(11) Texas veterans' vocational schools;
(12) Public or private colleges or universities and private elementary and secondary schools in all other states in the United States or within the boundaries of any of its territorial possessions;
(13) Foreign public or private colleges or universities, or elementary and secondary schools;
(14) U.S. Department of Interior--Bureau of Indian Affairs;
(15) U.S. service academies;
(16) U.S. military service;
(17) Job Corps; and
(18) Peace Corps (in a professional capacity only).
TITLE 19, PART 2, CH 153, SUBCHAPTER CC, §153.1021 (h)(13)
(13) Foreign public or private elementary and secondary schools, colleges, and universities.
(A) Employment in colleges or universities must be verified in the same manner as for Texas colleges or universities.
(B) For foreign public schools, colleges, and universities, accreditation by a recognized agency of the foreign country or by a recognized accrediting agency in the United States is required.
(C) For foreign private schools, colleges, and universities, accreditation must be by a recognized regional accrediting agency listed in subsection (a)(15) of this section, unless the requirements in subparagraph (E) of this paragraph are met.
(D) The accreditation status must be verified in the same manner as for public or private schools in the United States.
(E) Experience from foreign private schools, colleges, and universities that have been accredited by a recognized accrediting agency of the foreign country may be recognized for salary increment purposes, provided the minimum requirements in subsection (f) of this section are met. All relevant and credible information concerning accreditation must be provided to the Texas Education Agency. The recognized accrediting entity in the foreign country is the Department of Education or the Higher Education Authority of that foreign country. It is the responsibility of the foreign country to provide such relevant, credible, and accurate information before any credit is given. Such experience will be considered on an individual country basis. The placement on the minimum salary schedule will begin with the following contractual year (July 1 - June 30) after the final approval is granted by the Texas Education Agency. The district or charter school is not liable for any previously non-compensated salary related to such experience.
Page last modified on 12/14/2010.