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Teacher Standards

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.

To receive a license to teach in Wisconsin, an applicant shall complete an approved program and demonstrate a proficient performance in the knowledge, skills, and dispositions under all of the teacher standards.

The ten teacher standards for teacher development and licensure are:

  1. Pupil Development. The teacher understands how pupils grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas. The teacher designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences for pupils.
  2. Learning Differences. The teacher uses his or her understanding of individual pupil differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each pupil to meet high standards.
  3. Learning Environments. The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation.
  4. Content Knowledge. The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of each discipline he or she teaches. The teacher creates learning experiences that make the discipline accessible and meaningful for pupils to assure mastery of the content.
  5. Application of Content. The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage pupils in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.
  6. Assessment. The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage pupils in their own growth, to monitor pupil progress, and to guide the teacher’s and pupil’s decision making.
  7. Planning for Instruction. The teacher plans instruction that supports every pupil in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, pedagogy, pupils, and pupils’ communities.
  8. Instructional Strategies. The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage pupils to develop a deep understanding of content areas and their connections, and to develop skills to apply knowledge in a meaningful way.
  9. Professional Learning and Ethical Practice. The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning. The teacher uses evidence to continuously evaluate the teacher’s practice, including the effects of the teacher’s choices and actions on pupils, their families, other educators, and the community. The teacher adapts the teacher’s practice to meet the needs of each pupil.
  10. Leadership and Collaboration. The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunity in order to take responsibility for pupil learning, to collaborate with pupils, their families, educators, and the community, and to advance the profession.