Highly Qualified Teachers
The federal definition of a highly qualified teacher (HQT) is one who meets all of the following criteria:
- Holds at least a bachelor degree from a four-year institution
- Fully certificated or licensed by the state
- Demonstrates competence in each
core academic subject area in which the teacher teaches
Districts are responsible for identifying and documenting highly qualified teachers. Teachers who are new to the state or job assignment should contact the human resources department of their school district for assistance in determining their status as a highly qualified teacher.
Manuals — HQT and Data Collection
School District Procedures
Report — Analysis of 2012-2013 HQT Data
On September 1, 2014, OSPI limited district use of the Points-Based High Objective Uniform State Standard of Evaluation (HOUSSE) form for general education teachers.
After August 31, 2014, districts may only use a “revised” version HOUSSE form to document content expertise in core academic subject areas for special education teachers.
Teachers in Title I buildings are required to be highly qualified at time of placement. Districts cannot use plans to document how teachers will become highly qualified. By law, schools must notify parents regarding the placement of a student in the classroom of a non-highly qualified teacher.
In Washington State, preschools are not considered part of basic education. Therefore, preschool teachers in general education programs are not required to be highly qualified. Special Education preschool teachers must meet the IDEA endorsement requirements in WAC 392-172A-02090(1)(d). See
Question #4 for more information.
Federal guidelines for Title I pre-schools encourage teachers to “meet the highest professional standards for teaching young children, which ideally include having earned a baccalaureate degree and received comprehensive education about child development…Well-educated, effective teachers are essential to a high-quality preschool program and the successful development and learning of young children.”