Changing Teacher Qualification Notice Requirements Implemented Due to ESSA


The 2016-2017 school year will be one of transition due to the reauthorization of the ESEA by the ESSA. One transition includes the No Child Left Behind (NCLB), Title I Section 1119, Highly Qualified Teachers requirements: the US Department of Education (USED) is not requiring that districts comply with these requirements during the 2016-2017 SY.

 Here’s what you need to know:

  1. No longer required: Notices related to the NCLB requirements for teachers to be Highly Qualified (HQ).
  2. Still required: Notification of the right to request (and the responsibility of the district to provide) the professional qualifications of teacher(s).
  3. Not required but still recommended for the current year: Notification that a student has been assigned or taught for four or more consecutive weeks by a teacher that does not meet state certification or licensure for the grade level and/or subject(s) being taught is not being required, but is highly recommended, for the 2016-2017 school year.
  4. Current NCLB collection subscribers do not need to be concerned. As of August, TransACT has updated Teacher and Paraprofessional Qualifications notices to communicate that teachers must meet appropriate State certification and licensure for the grade level and subjects taught, as required by ESSA.

Not a current NCLB/ESSA Compliance Collection subscriber? Click here to contact us for a quote.

USED FAQ from June clarifies Highly Qualified-related communications under ESSA

The USED issued a FAQ (originally released in February 2016 and updated on June 29th) that combined information from several Dear Colleague Letters and responses to questions they received. This FAQ spells out specifics related to parent notifications during the transition to ESSA.

Question D-3 says, “Schools will no longer be required to provide notice to parents related to the highly qualified status of their child’s teacher. Please note that LEAs [local education agencies, i.e. districts] are required to continue with section 1111(h)(6)(A) of the ESEA, as amended by NCLB, which requires an LEA to notify parents that they may request and the LEA will provide certain information regarding the professional qualifications of the student’s teachers and paraprofessionals, as appropriate.”

Concerned about keeping pace with parent notice requirements during the shift to ESSA? Talk to us today.

Gap year for Teacher Status Notice

In previous years, NCLB required that districts notify parents when their child was assigned or taught, for four or more consecutive weeks, by a teacher that is not Highly Qualified. While this notice is not required during the 2016-2017 SY, a similar notice that addresses State certification and licensure in these circumstances is required in the 2017-2018 SY. In order to facilitate a smooth transition to ESSA, TransACT has updated its Notice of Teacher Status letter, which is now available as well.

This letter, although optional, is still recommended for the 2016-2017 SY and will be required in the 2017-2018 SY. Click here to see all the available notices.

Updates are live for current customers NOW

All “teacher and paraprofessional qualifications” notices have been updated for use during the 2016-2017 school year. TransACT’s online parent notice resource is always:

  • Written in accordance with ESEA requirements
  • Updated with guidance from USED or OCR/DOJ where applicable
  • Legally reviewed where necessary 

The English versions and translations of the notices Annual Parent Notice: Right to Request Teacher Qualifications and Teacher Qualification Response to Parents were posted for use in August. Contact us to check on availability in your priority languages.

Login to your account and browse the updated notices today.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact us at 425.977.2100, Option 3 or email at

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Dr. David Holbrook

About The Author

Dr. David Holbrook is a nationally recognized leader in federal programs administration and monitoring with expertise in Title I, Title III, Native American Education, and Federal Programs. Dr. Holbrook has also worked as a consultant with Title III of the US Department of Education and now serves as Executive Director, Federal Compliance and State Relationships with TransAct.