Wednesday, May 4, 2016

What is "Highly Qualified"?
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) recognizes that teacher quality is one of the most important factors in improving student achievement and sets the goals that all students be taught by a “highly qualified teacher."

  • Federal law requires teachers paid by Title 1 funds to be highly qualified.
  • Title 1 schools are required to hire only those teachers identified as highly qualified in the content area they are hired to teach.
  • A teacher who is on an Exception Authorization cannot be highly qualified because they do not hold full licensure in the area in which they are assigned.

Are you "Highly Qualified"?
According to the No Child Left Behind Act, the USDOE has defined a teacher as highly qualified if he/she:  

  • Holds a bachelor’s degree
  • Holds full state licensure in the area(s) assigned to teach AND
  • Demonstrates competency in each highly qualified area to which he/she is assigned to teach
Viewing Your HQ Status Online
If you would like to view your status as a Highly Qualified educator, you can do so by logging into your online account.
To view a PDF document with step by step instructions on how to view your HQ status: 


Praxis Information

Obtaining Highly Qualified Status

How to OBTAIN Highly Qualified status in Wyoming

No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act recognizes that a teaching degree from an accredited university in a specific content area is considered a "demonstration of competency". Applicants with a teaching degree in a HQ content area are considered Highly Qualified based on his/her major--and will be issued a five year standard teaching license without additional requirements (no testing required).

Applicants for first time licensure in Elementary Education and Social Studies Composite:

  •  Elementary Education majors must take the Praxis II 5001 Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects exam effective 09/01/2014. As of 08/31/2014, the Praxis II 0011/5011 Elementary Education: Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment exam will no longer be available to test takers. To pass the Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects exam applicants must receive a passing score on each subtest. Applicants may take all four subtests (5002, 5003, 5004, 5005) at the same time by selecting 5001 Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects when registering. If applicants wish to take or retake an individual subtest, they may register to take just that subtest. Please click on the Praxis Exam Chart link below to see the passing scores for each subtest. Please note that PTSB will still accept the Praxis II exam for Elementary Education: Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment exam if you have taken and passed the exam with a passing score of 160.

  • Social Studies Composite majors for Grades 6 through 12 must take the PRAXIS II exam 5081/0081 "Social Studies: Content Knowledge" and receive a passing score of 158 or better.  For Social Studies Composite for Grades 5 through 8, applicants must have taken PRAXIS II exam 5089/0089 "Middle School Social Studies" and received a passing score of 153 or better.

Applicants who have held, or currently hold, a teaching certificate in Elementary or Social Studies are eligible for a five (5) year Wyoming Educator License without submission of either of the Praxis exams. However, these applicants will not be considered Highly Qualified until passing the Praxis II exam above. 


Highly Qualified Areas

The following list identifies the teaching areas that REQUIRE Highly Qualified status in Wyoming:

  • Art 
  • Elementary Education
  • Early Childhood/Special Education
  • Economics (Secondary)
  • Elementary
  • English (Secondary)/Language Arts (Middle)
  • Exceptional Children (K-12)
  • Foreign Language
  • Geography (Secondary)
  • History (Secondary)
  • Math (Secondary)
  • Music
  • Political Science/Civics/Government (Secondary)
  • Reading
  • Science - All science endorsements: biology, physics, etc.(including Middle and Secondary)
  • Social Studies (Middle)

Are you currently endorsed in Special Education? 

  • A teacher certified in Special Education is considered "highly qualified" (HQ) in Wyoming based on their special education major.

  • A licensed and HQ special education teacher must also be HQ in specific content areas,(as identified in the HQ List above), if they are the teacher who provides the core instruction for that content (the "teacher of record").  If the SPED teacher's role is one of a consultant to the content teacher in assisting the student learn that particular content then they do not need to "demonstrate competency" (be HQ) in the content.

  • A certified special education teacher may obtain HQ status in a teaching field identified as HQ by submitting a passing score on the PRAXIS exam for that particular content.  See the Testing requirements page HERE

  • A licensed and HQ special education teacher is considered HQ to be the teacher of record of all content for students whose Individualized Education Plans(IEP's) require the instruction of the "Alternate Standards" - this is the case for students identified as cognitively disabled.

  • Certified special education teachers (regardless of HQ status) may only teach students on an IEP.  For, example, if a SPED teacher is HQ in Math, they are only certified to teach math to students with an IEP.  The only exception for them to teach Math to students who do not have an IEP is if they also hold an endorsement in math.



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