A key goal of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act is that every student will receive instruction from a “highly qualified” teacher (HQT). To be considered “highly qualified” under ESEA, a teacher of core academic content must possess:

  1. A bachelor’s degree

  2. A teaching or intern credential, and

  3. Demonstrated core academic subject matter competence

The core academic content areas include: multiple/general subjects, English, reading/language arts, mathematics, science, foreign languages, civics/government, economics, history, geography, and the arts.

 

Teachers are categorized as “new” or “not new” by the original issuance date of their first full or intern teaching credential. Districts are required to develop plans to ensure both “new” and “not new” teachers assigned to teach core academic content areas meet the “highly qualified” teacher criteria.
 

Each Fall, site master schedules are centrally reviewed to identify teachers needing to meet the “highly qualified” requirements for their current assignments. Teacher Preparation and Support Department staff have trained a cadre of retired administrators that meet with principals to review their master schedules. The cadre then works with teachers not meeting the “highly qualified” criteria for their assignments, and together they develop an individual plan to help each teacher to become compliant.

 

“New” Teachers

 

A “new” teacher is one whose first full or intern teaching credential was issued ON OR AFTER July 1, 2002. Credentials that qualify for determining ESEA compliance include: general, life, professional clear, preliminary, intern, and certain out-of-state (as verified by the Human Resource Services Division). Credentials that do NOT qualify for determining ESEA compliance include: emergency, short term permit, provisional intern permit, pre-intern, and 30-day emergency substitute.

“New” elementary teachers are required to pass a state-approved multiple subjects examination to demonstrate subject matter competence, such as the California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET), PRAXIS, MSAT, NTE, etc.

 

“New” secondary teachers demonstrate compliance in any of the following ways:

  • State-approved examination (CSET, PRAXIS, MSET, NTE, etc.) in the core academic content area they are teaching

  • CCTC-approved subject matter program in the content area they are teaching

  • Major or major equivalent (32 semester hours) in the core academic content area they are teaching

  • Graduate degree in the core academic content area they are teaching

CSET Preparation

The district in partnership with San Diego County Office of Education developed online CSET test prep courses offered at a nominal fee in the areas of Multiple Subjects, English, Mathematics, and Social Science. Contact Chris Reising at rreising@sdcoe.net or for information visit http://www.sdcoe.net/human-resources/Pages/cset-training.aspx

“Not New” Teachers 

A “not new” teacher is one who holds a full or intern teaching credential issued BEFORE July 1, 2002. Credentials that qualify for determining ESEA compliance include general, life, professional clear, preliminary, intern, and certain out-of-state (as verified by the Human Resource Services Division). Credentials that do NOT qualify for determining ESEA compliance include emergency, short term permit, provisional intern permit, pre-intern, and 30-day emergency substitute.

“Not new” elementary teachers have two options to demonstrate subject matter competence. They may pass the state-approved multiple subjects examination (CSET, PRAXIS, MSAT, NTE, etc.), or complete the California High Objective Uniform State Standard of Evaluation (HOUSSE).

“Not new” secondary teachers may demonstrate ESEA compliance in any of the following ways:

  • State-approved subject matter examination (CSET, PRAXIS, MSAT, NTE, etc.) in the core academic content area they are teaching

  • California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) approved credential program in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Undergraduate major in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Graduate degree in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Coursework equivalent to an undergraduate degree (32 semester hours) in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Advanced certification (NBPTS) in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • HOUSSE 

Elementary Assignments 

For the purposes of ESEA “highly qualified” teacher compliance, elementary assignments include:

  • Grades K-6 general education 
  • Grades K-8 special education 
  • Grade 6 general education teachers at middle schools if they teach the same students two or more subjects on the same day
  • Grades K-12 ILS/PACE special education 
  • Teachers at K-8 schools (except for algebra and foreign language used for high school credit)

Secondary Assignments

 

For the purposes of ESEA “highly qualified” teacher compliance, secondary assignments include:

  • Grade 6 general education teachers at middle schools if they teach different students two or more subjects 
  • Grades 7-12 general education 
  • Grades 9-12 special education (other than ILS/PACE) 
  • Grades K-12 VAPA

Special Education Teachers

Special education teachers providing instruction in core academic subjects must be “highly qualified” and comply with ESEA requirements.

  • Grades K-8 special education teachers are certified using elementary (multiple subjects) criteria. 
  • Grades 9-12 special education teachers are certified using secondary (single subjects) criteria. Courses in the 7300 “applied” series are generally considered to be secondary courses. 
  • Grades K-12 ILS and PACE teachers are certified using the elementary (multiple subjects) criteria. Courses in the 7100 “functional” series are generally considered to be elementary courses. 

Special education teachers that provide instruction in a co-teaching model, provide only consultation services to other teachers, adapt curriculum, use behavioral supports/intervention, or assist students with study/organizational skills are not required to meet the ESEA “highly qualified teacher” requirements.

 

Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) Teachers

All VAPA teachers (grades K-12) must meet secondary criteria for their particular subject area (music, drama, art, etc.)

California High Objective Uniform State Standard of Evaluation (HOUSSE)

The district and SDEA designed the HOUSSE process following federal and California Department of Education (CDE) guidelines. The HOUSSE Process consists of two parts, through which teachers must accumulate 100 points to meet the ESEA highly qualified teacher requirement.

Part 1

Core academic subject area competence can be demonstrated through a combination of:

  • Prior experience in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Coursework in the core academic content area they are teaching 
  • Leadership and service to the profession in the core academic content area they are teaching, and/or 
  • Standards-aligned professional development in the core academic content area they are teaching 

The HOUSSE Part 1 Guidebook outlines the steps for completing the Assessment of Qualification and Experience Form that is used to document how “not new” teachers accumulate 100 points.

Part 2

Classroom observations may be conducted for teachers who were unable to accumulate 100 points in HOUSSE Part 1. Each successful observation is worth 20 points and may be combined with other points collected in HOUSSE Part 1 to reach the 100-point requirement. Please note that HOUSSE Part 2 observations are not associated in any way with the teacher evaluation process.

An administrator meets with the teacher to begin the observation process by holding a pre-observation conference to determine the specifics of the lesson to be observed. Together, the administrator and teacher review the Sample Lesson, the Classroom Lesson Plan and Observation Form, and Standards 3 Standard 4.2 of the California Standards for the Teaching Profession (CSTP). (For a copy of the CSTP booklet, go to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/educator-prep/standards/CSTP-2009.pdf. The teacher completes the left side of the form and provides it to the administrator prior to the observation for review and use during the observation. The teacher must also identify two students (high and low ends of the class, if possible) prior to the observation for post-lesson reflection.
 

During the observation, the administrator completes the far right side of the form, citing evidence seen and heard that supports attainment of Standards 3 and 5.1. Typical forms of evidence include: observation of instruction, student work, samples and achievement data, lesson and unit plans, analysis of student work, etc.

After the observation lesson, the teacher completes the Analysis of Student Performance page to analyze performance of the two students selected prior to the lesson.

 

Related Resources

Teacher Qualification Information Request Form:
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Contact Information 

Amparo Romo
Teacher Preparation and Induction Department
(858) 256-2710 x5342