Short Call Substitute License

Short Call Substitute License

This license allows for teaching on a day-to-day basis, not to exceed 20 consecutive days replacing the same teacher. The license is valid for functioning as a short call substitute teacher at all grade levels in all teaching fields.

  • A short-call sub is authorized to teach beyond the 20 consecutive days when the individual has submitted a completed application to PELSB for the assignment.
  • If a position remains unfilled for more than 20 days or the teacher-of-record is
    absent for more than 20 days, the position must be filled by a long-term
    substitute or a teacher licensed for the assignment (holds tiered licensure).

NOTE: A long call substitute teacher is one who replaces the same teacher for 20 or more consecutive days. A long call substitute teacher must hold a Minnesota Tier license or permission valid for the assignment.

If you complete a teacher preparation program through UMD and obtain a Tier 3 license, the Tier 3 license can be automatically used for short-call substitute teaching.

Eligibility for a Short Call Substitute License

To apply for this license, you must meet ONE of the following:

  • Hold a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a college or university located in the United States that is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission or by the regional association for accreditation of colleges and secondary schools, as verified by a college transcript.
  • Hold a credential from outside the United States that is equivalent to a bachelor's degree, as verified by a credential evaluation completed by a credited evaluator approved by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or other board-approved credential evaluation services
  • For applicants in career and technical education fields and career pathway courses of study, you have one of the following:
    • five years of relevant work experience aligned to the assignment
    • an associate's degree aligned to the assignment, or
    • a professional certification aligned to the assignment from an approved certifying organization
  • Be enrolled in and making meaningful progress, as defined by the provider, in a board-approved teacher preparation program and have successfully completed student teaching to be employed as a short-call substitute teacher.

Length of license

  • The short-call substitute license is valid for up to 3 years and expires on June 30th of the expiration year.


  • Applicants must re-apply for a short-call substitute license upon its expiration.

To qualify for this license, you will fall into 1 of 2 scenarios:

Scenario 1:  Completed your bachelor's degree program

  • STEP 1:
    • Pick up a fingerprint card at the CEHSP ALFE office in 116 Bohannon Hall or complete the fingerprint card request to have one mailed to you.
    • Once received Google search “County you are living in and fingerprinting” to outreach to the local courthouse or police station to schedule an appointment for fingerprinting. Let them know that you need this for your MN Teaching License.  Local Options:  Duluth St. Louis County Fingerprinting, Proctor or Cloquet Police Department, If you are in the Minneapolis area, MN BCA Fingerprinting or Bloomington Mobile Fingerprinting.
    • Hold onto fingerprint card until you receive your official transcript from UMD.
  • STEP 2:
    • Check your transcript to be sure your degree has been awarded.  Go online to: then click on "Academics" and then the "Degree Progress" tab.
    • If your degree has been awarded request a official paper transcript to be mailed to you online at:  UMD Transcript Request.
    • When received do not open it, the transcript needs to arrive at PELSB in a sealed envelope.
  • STEP 3: 
    • Apply for your substitute license online at:  Short-Call Substitute Application and scroll down to the "Online Licensing Application" under Substitute Application heading
    • Submit the online payment and application.
  • STEP 4:
    • Mail your completed fingerprint card and your official transcript in a sealed envelope to PELSB at Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board, 1021 Bandana Blvd. E., Suite 222, St. Paul, MN 55108-5111
  • STEP 5:
    • Track progress in your online application system or by searching for your name in the PELSB Educator License lookup website.  When your license is received you will receive a File Folder Number, as you are applying for substitute teaching positions at various districts provide the district with your File Folder Number to begin substitute teaching.
  • STEP 6:
    • When your license is issued you will receive an email copy of your license.
    • Once you have passed your MTLE Content and Pedagogy Exams, please email [email protected] to learn the steps to apply for a Tier 3 license.

Scenario 2:  You have earned a grade in student teaching but have not yet been awarded your degree.

Once you earn a grade in student teaching you are eligible to apply for the substitute teaching license at PELSB.  This will impact IESE Block 4 once awarded a grade ELED 4600, UECH Block 4 students once awarded a grade in student teaching, and STEP students who earn a grade in student teaching AND have an additional semester of coursework following student teaching.

Recommendation for Licensure

Your short-call substitute license will be granted directly from PELSB Licensing. All licensure materials need to be mailed to:
Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board
1021 Bandana Blvd. E., Suite 222
St. Paul, MN 55108-5111

License Renewal

Each license has a different renewal process and timeline. This is done through the PELSB Educator licensing renewal website. 

Moving to a Tier license from a short call substitute teaching license