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Standards and Procedures for Denial of License

DPI is currently receiving a high volume of contacts for assistance.  The three most commonly asked questions and their answers are below:

Help with WAMS IDs

Before you can submit an application to DPI, you must register for a Web Access Management Systems (WAMS) user ID.

How to set up a WAMS account

Already have one or more WAMS accounts?

How to start your WAMS account recovery:

Perform a WAMS account recovery for all emails you have. Enter your email address but do NOT enter your User ID to start your WAMS account recovery. Once in the account recovery process you will be prompted to change your password. After you change your password you will be told in parentheses what your correct User ID is. Please make note of that before you terminate the account recovery session. Once you have recovered all WAMS accounts you have, login to ELO with each of your accounts individually. If you can see your licenses, you are logging in with the correct WAMS account. If you are taken through the Onboarding process again, you are not using the correct WAMS account and should try another account.

If you encounter errors in the WAMS account recovery process, please contact WAMS directly.  DPI is unable to help with WAMS recovery because the system is used by many state agencies and is run by the Department of Administration:

Revalidating Life or Lifetime License

Educators, whose Life or Lifetime license was invalidated in July, have until December 31 to revalidate their license. Upon approval of the $45 Request Background Check - Lifetime Licensee [5900] application, the Lifetime license will be revalidated just as if the educator completed the application before June 30. Educators will have until December 31 to complete this application for their license to be revalidated.

Background Checks

DPI is required by law to conduct a background check on each applicant for a Wisconsin educator license regardless of whether it is an initial request or a renewal request.

All educators are required to complete a background check to maintain or revalidate a life or lifetime license. There are directions for how to complete the $45 Request Background Check - Lifetime Licensee [5900].

To find the year in which your most recent background check was submitted, search License Lookup using your name or entity number and check see the “Last Background Check Submitted” field.

The decision to issue or deny a license is based on the following standards as stated in Wis. Admin Code PI 34.103:

  • The state superintendent shall deny, refuse to renew or refuse to revalidate a license based on liability in delinquent taxes as certified by Department of Revenue – Wis. Stat. 118.19 (1m)(a) and (b)
  • The state superintendent shall deny, refuse to renew or refuse to revalidate a license based on delinquency in making court-ordered payments of child or family support as certified by department of children and families – Wis. Stat. 118.19 (1r)(a) and (b)
  • The state superintendent shall deny a license based on certain convictions – Wis. Stat 118.19 (4)
  • The state superintendent shall deny a license to a person who has not met the requirements of licensure as provided in Wis. Admin Code PI 34.097-34.107 and Wis. Stat. 118.19.
  • The state superintendent may deny, refuse to renew or refuse to revalidate a license to a person who has engaged in immoral conduct or incompetence.
  • The state superintendent may deny licensure to a person whose license has been revoked by another state.
  • The state superintendent may deny or refuse to renew a license to a person who has provided a false, inaccurate, or incomplete application.

If the DPI denies a license, the applicant will be notified, in writing, of the decision. The applicant has a right to request an administrative hearing within 30 days of the date of denial by submitting in writing to the State Superintendent:

  1. Applicant’s name and address
  2. The type of license for which the applicant has applied.
  3. The reason the applicant is requesting a license.
  4. The facts which the applicant intends to prove at the hearing to support the request for the license.  
  5. A description of the mistake the applicant believes was made, if the applicant claims that the denial of license is based on a mistake in fact or law.

At the hearing, the applicant will have the burden of proving why the department’s denial of licensure was improper, inaccurate, or otherwise wrong. The hearing will be conducted as a Class 1 Public Hearing, under Wis. Stat. 227.01 (3).

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