The state should ensure that middle school teachers are sufficiently prepared to teach appropriate grade-level content.
Wyoming requires a middle-level (grades 5-8) endorsement for middle school teachers. However, the state does not explicitly require a major or minor in the subject areas that candidates plan to teach.
Regrettably, only new middle school teachers in Wyoming who have not acquired certification through a traditional route must pass a single-subject Praxis II content test to attain licensure. In these cases, a general content knowledge test is not an option.
PTSB Rules and Regulations, Chapters 3 and 4 http://ptsb.state.wy.us/ www.ets.org/praxis
Strengthen middle school teachers' subject-matter preparation.
Although the state is commended for not allowing middle school teachers to teach on a K-8 generalist license, it should strengthen middle school teachers' subject-matter preparation. Wyoming should encourage middle school teachers who plan to teach multiple subjects to earn two minors in two core academic areas. Middle school candidates who intend to teach a single subject should earn a major in that area.
Require subject-matter testing for all middle school teacher candidates.
Wyoming should require subject-matter testing for all middle school teacher candidates in every core academic area they intend to teach as a condition of initial licensure.
Wyoming was helpful in providing NCTQ with the facts necessary for this analysis. The state added that the middle school generalist endorsement is obsolete, and that candidates must complete a preparation program in the specific area in which they intend to seek certification.