Former UMD students file lawsuit over issue with teaching licenses


Thirteen former students from the University of Minnesota Duluth have filed a lawsuit against the school because of issues getting their teaching licenses after graduation.

The Duluth News Tribune reports the group is accusing UMD of fraud and misrepresentation, and wants monetary compensation because they weren't able to get the standard teaching license expected upon graduating.

So what happened?

It all stems from 2012 when, essentially, the correct paperwork wasn't filed for UMD’s Integrated Elementary and Special Education (IESE) program.

To get a first-time full professional Minnesota education license (the standard license for new teachers), someone has to receive a degree from a state-approved teacher preparation program, the state Department of Education notes.

But because the paperwork didn't go through (the university said it was due to a "glitch"), the program wasn't technically accredited – and earlier this year roughly two dozen graduates were deemed ineligible for a teaching license because of that.

It all resulted in the Minnesota Board of Teaching placing UMD’s College of Education and Human Service Professions on probationary status.

The group filing the lawsuit graduated from a new hybrid program, Northland's NewsCenter reports. They claim UMD knew about the issues but didn't tell students, and each wants $50,000 or more in damages.

According to FOX 9, UMD has since received a provisional accreditation, and a spokesperson says everyone who graduated from the education program has been given full licensure.

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