2023 - 2024 LEGISLATURE
November 8, 2023 - Introduced by Representatives Dittrich, Nedweski,
Rettinger, Brandtjen, Melotik, Rozar, Murphy, Donovan, O'Connor and
Michalski, cosponsored by Senators Knodl, Nass and Tomczyk. Referred to
Committee on Education.
AB640,1,3 1An Act to amend 115.28 (7) (a) and 118.19 (3) (a); and to create 118.198 of the
2statutes; relating to: a license to teach based on working as a paraprofessional
3in a school district.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill requires the Department of Public Instruction to issue a provisional
license to teach to an individual who a) passes a background check, b) worked as a
paraprofessional for at least three days per week for at least one school year in a
classroom, and c) is recommended for licensure by the principal of the school at which
the individual worked as a paraprofessional, the director of teaching and learning
for the school district in which the individual worked as a paraprofessional, and the
school district administrator of the school district in which the individual worked as
a paraprofessional. Under the bill, a provisional license to teach that is issued based
on these criteria authorizes the license holder to teach only in the school district that
recommended the individual for the license. Additionally, during the first school
year during which the license holder teaches under the license, the license holder
must be mentored by a teacher who has taught for at least three school years in the
school district. Finally, the bill specifies that DPI must issue a lifetime license based
on a provisional license issued under the bill if the license holder successfully
completes six semesters of teaching experience.

For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB640,1 1Section 1. 115.28 (7) (a) of the statutes, as affected by 2023 Wisconsin Act 20,
2is amended to read:
AB640,2,203 115.28 (7) (a) License all teachers for the public schools of the state; make rules
4establishing standards of attainment and procedures for the examination and
5licensing of teachers within the limits prescribed in ss. 118.19 (2) and (3), 118.191,
6118.1915, 118.192, 118.193, 118.194, 118.195, and , 118.197, and 118.198; prescribe
7by rule standards, requirements, and procedures for the approval of teacher
8preparatory programs leading to licensure, including a requirement that, to be
9approved by the state superintendent, a teacher preparatory program shall
10demonstrate that it provides instruction that prepares teachers to teach reading and
11language arts using science-based early reading instruction, as defined in s. 118.015
12(1c) (b), and does not provide instruction on teaching reading and language arts that
13incorporates 3-cueing, as defined in s. 118.015 (1c) (c), and a requirement that,
14beginning on July 1, 2012, and annually thereafter, each teacher preparatory
15program located in this state shall submit to the department a list of individuals who
16have completed the program and who have been recommended by the program for
17licensure under this subsection, together with each individual's date of program
18completion, from each term or semester of the program's most recently completed
19academic year; file in the state superintendent's office all papers relating to state
20teachers' licenses; and register each such license.
AB640,2 21Section 2. 118.19 (3) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
1118.19 (3) (a) No license to teach in any public school may be issued unless the
2applicant possesses a bachelor's degree including such professional training as the
3department by rule requires, except as permitted under par. (b) and ss. 115.28 (17)
4(a), 118.191, 118.1915, 118.192, 118.193, 118.194, and , 118.197 and 118.198.
5Notwithstanding s. 36.11 (16), no teacher preparatory program in this state may be
6approved by the state superintendent under s. 115.28 (7) (a), unless each student in
7the program is required to complete student teaching consisting of full days for a full
8semester following the daily schedule and semester calendar of the cooperating
9school or the equivalent, as determined by the state superintendent. No license to
10teach in any public school may be granted to an applicant who completed a
11professional training program outside this state unless the applicant completed
12student teaching consisting of full days for a full semester following the daily
13schedule and semester calendar of the cooperating school or the equivalent, as
14determined by the state superintendent. The state superintendent may grant
15exceptions to the student teaching requirements under this paragraph when the
16midyear calendars of the institution offering the teacher preparatory program and
17the cooperating school differ from each other and would prevent students from
18attending classes at the institution in accordance with the institution's calendar.
19The state superintendent shall promulgate rules to implement this subsection. If for
20the purpose of granting a license to teach or for approving a teacher preparatory
21program the state superintendent requires that an institution of higher education
22be accredited, the state superintendent shall accept accreditation by a regional or
23national institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. department of
24education or by a programmatic accrediting organization.
AB640,3 25Section 3. 118.198 of the statutes is created to read:
1118.198 License to teach; paraprofessional experience. (1) In this
AB640,4,43 (a) “Employing school district” means a school district that employs an
4individual as a paraprofessional.
AB640,4,65 (b) “Experienced teacher” means a teacher who has taught for at least 3 school
6years in an employing school district.
AB640,4,10 7(2) Notwithstanding s. 118.19 (4m), (6) to (9), (12), and (14), the department
8shall grant a provisional license to teach for a term of 3 years to an individual who
9is eligible for licensure under s. 118.19 (4) and (10) and who satisfies all of the
AB640,4,1211 (a) The individual worked as a paraprofessional in a classroom for at least 3
12days a week for at least one school year.
AB640,4,1413 (b) All of the following recommend the individual for a provisional license to
14teach by signing the individual's application for a license under this section:
AB640,4,1515 1. The principal of the school at which the individual worked under par. (a).
AB640,4,1616 2. The director of teaching and learning for the employing school district.
AB640,4,1817 3. The school district administrator of the employing school district or the
18school district administrator's designee.
AB640,4,21 19(3) (a) A provisional license to teach issued under sub. (2) authorizes the license
20holder to teach only in the employing school district that recommended the license
21holder under sub. (2) (b).
AB640,4,2422 (b) During at least the first school year that the license holder is employed as
23a teacher by the employing school district, the employing school district shall ensure
24that the license holder is mentored by an experienced teacher.
1(4) The department shall issue a lifetime license to an individual who obtains
2a provisional license under sub. (2) if the individual successfully completes 6
3semesters of teaching experience, as defined by the department by rule. An
4individual who does not successfully complete 6 semesters of teaching experience, as
5defined by the department by rule, within the 3-year term of a provisional license
6issued under sub. (2) may apply to renew the provisional license. There is no limit
7to the number of times an individual may renew a provisional license under this
AB640,5,99 (End)