All students with individualized education plans (IEPs) are guaranteed access to “highly qualified” teachers (HQTs) under No Child Left Behind and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Under HQT legislation, students with IEPs, except those assessed against alternate standards, are guaranteed access to a teacher who has expertise in core content. In Iowa, that expertise equals core content endorsement. Special education teachers whose students are expected to achieve alternate assessment standards are considered highly qualified if they hold a special education endorsement appropriate to the needs of their students.
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