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Alternative Certification: A National Perspective SELECT COMMITTEE ON LATERAL ENTRY Raleigh, North Carolina November 14, 2003 Charles R. Coble Vice-President,

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Presentation on theme: "Alternative Certification: A National Perspective SELECT COMMITTEE ON LATERAL ENTRY Raleigh, North Carolina November 14, 2003 Charles R. Coble Vice-President,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Alternative Certification: A National Perspective SELECT COMMITTEE ON LATERAL ENTRY Raleigh, North Carolina November 14, 2003 Charles R. Coble Vice-President, Policy Studies & Programs Education Commission of the States

2 What is a Highly Qualified Teacher? (as defined by NCLB) Has full state certification Holds a minimum of a bachelor’s degree Has demonstrated subject matter competency in each of the academic subjects in which the teacher teaches - if the subject is a core academic subject.

3 What is a Highly Qualified Teacher? (as defined by NCTAF) Have thorough knowledge of their subjects Know how students learn Can assess and increase student learning Manage classrooms effectively Care about the academic, social, civic, and personal success of all students Use technology effectively to promote learning Collaborate with colleagues, parents, & community members to create positive learning environments Are active and reflective learners

4 Why the Concern for Highly Qualified Teachers? The NCLB Imperative: “Closing the achievement gap between high- and low-performing children, especially the achievement gaps between minority and non-minority students, and between disadvantaged children and their more advantaged peers.” 20 U.S.C. § 6301

5 Why the Concern for Highly Qualified Teachers? Workforce Skills and the Old Economy The premium was on a “strong back and a weak mind.” Workers were expected to be docile and tolerant of routine. There were low educational expectations and for “thinking on the job.”

6 Why the Concern for Highly Qualified Teachers? Workforce Skills and the New Economy Employees are expected to think and solve problems on the job. Employees are expected to be able to read, write, speak, and have computational skills. Basic and advanced computer skills are expected. Employees are expected to work effectively individually and with others, often in teams. Volk, K. & Peel, H. “A Projection of 21 st Century Workforce Skills”, Rural Education Institute, East Carolina University, 1993

7 Teachers Matter: Math Gain Scores in Dallas Source: Heather Jordan, Robert Mendro, & Dash Weerasinghe, “Teacher Effects On Longitudinal Student Achievement” 1997.

8 Teachers Matter: Math and Reading Gain Scores in Boston -0.6% 14.6% 0.3% 5.6% Average Student Growth Over One Year (percent) Least Effective Teachers Most Effective Teachers Source: Boston Public Schools, in “High School Restructuring,” March 9, (courtesy of The Education Trust) READINGMATH

9 Teachers Matter: Math gain scores Texas, grades 3-5

10 Teachers Matter for Low-Performing Students

11 Sources of Teacher Supply Teachers who remain from previous year 90% Re-entrants 4% New Graduates 6%

12 Sources of Teacher Supply

13 Beginning Teacher Attrition Is a Serious Problem Source: Richard Ingersoll, adapted for NCTAF from “The Teacher Shortage: A Case of Wrong Diagnosis and Wrong Prescription.” NASSP Bulletin 86 (June 2002 ): pp

14 Teacher Preparation Reduces Attrition of First-Year Teachers % of teachers leaving after one year

15 Average Retention Rates For Different Pathways Into Teaching Five-year program (B.A. in subject field and M.A. education) Four-year program (B.A. in subject field or education) Short-term alternative certification program (B.A. and summer training) Source: No Dream Denied A Pledge to America's Children. National Commission on Teaching and America's Future, January, 2003.

16 The Relationship between California Elementary School API Scores, Student Socioeconomic Status, and Teacher Qualifications, 2000 Source: No Dream Denied A Pledge to America's Children. National Commission on Teaching and America's Future, January, 2003.

17 Trends in Starting Salaries Across Professions United States,

18 The Teachers We Want Do we find them or prepare them and do we focus on… Individual talent or Preparation ? Content knowledge or Pedagogy ? Focus on outcomes or Focus on inputs ? Alternative or Traditional programs ?

19 The Teachers We Want The choices are not a real choices, but: Higher education must build more developmentally appropriate and accessible entry routes into teaching States must develop better policies and programs that support the success of teachers regardless of entry route

20 Significant Growth in Alternative Licensure  Approximately 200,000 alternative certifications granted since 1985  A significant increase in alternative certifications began in the mid-1990s  Since 1998, approximately 25,000 people per year were certified through alternative routes Source: The National Center for Education Information,

21 Which States Offer Alternative Licensure/Certification Programs? *West Virginia ---allows institutions of higher education to offer alternative certification programs, however, no institutions have currently implemented a program. Source: ECS State Teacher Preparation Policy Database, Yes (45 states* and DC) No (5 states)

22 Types of Alternative Programs University Based: Southeastern Louisiana University Master of Arts in Teaching program; Project ACT, East Carolina University University System: CalTeach (CSU) and NC TEACH (UNC) primarily recruit mid-career professionals Community Colleges: BS degree-completion programs (Miami-Dade & St. Petersburg CC) ; 2+2 degree completion programs (NCCC-UNC)

23 Types of Alternative Programs State Sponsored: New Jersey enacted legislation to create alternative certification in District Based: the Alternative Certification Program by the Houston Independent School District Federal: Troops To Teachers Independent: Teach for America; the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence

24 Who Enrolls in Alternative Programs? California: 53 alternative programs have certified over 10,000 teachers; 48% ethnic, 29% male; retention for the first 5 years was 86% New Jersey: 20-25% of all new teachers hired are from its alternative programs; they are older & more ethnically diverse Texas: 27 alternative teacher certification programs produce over 14% of new teachers hired; 41% are minority C. Emily Feistritzer, President,National Center for Education Information, 1999

25 How Should "Alternative Licensure" be Defined? “There is – or ought to be – a distinction made between alternative licensure and alternative routes to licensure. The latter concerns the preparation program path a candidate takes to become licensed, but there is no difference between the license this person receives as a beginning teacher and that of a more traditionally prepared teacher. The former implies a different set of criteria applied to grant licensure to an alternative candidate.” Michael Allen, Project Director, ECS Teaching Quality Policy Center

26 NCLB & Alternative Route Programs Teachers not fully certified, but participating in alternative route licensure shall be considered “highly-qualified” if they: (1)receive high-quality professional development that is sustained, intensive, and classroom-focused in order to have a positive and lasting impact on classroom instruction before and while teaching; (2) participate in a program of intensive supervision that consists of structured guidance and regular ongoing support for teachers, or a teacher mentoring program;

27 NCLB & Alternative Route Programs Teachers not fully certified, but participating in alternative route licensure shall be considered “highly-qualified” continued: (3) assume functions as a teacher for a specified period of time not to exceed three years; and (4) demonstrate satisfactory progress toward full certification as prescribed by the State. USDE, Improving Teaching Quality, Non-Regulatory Guidance, Revised Draft, September 12, 2003

28 Why the Increase in Alternatively- Licensed Teachers? While there may not be an overall shortage of teachers generally - nationally there is a shortage of math, science, bilingual education, and special education teachers. A number of alternative route programs have been set up specifically to recruit and prepare people to teach in these fields.

29 Why the Increase in Alternatively- Licensed Teachers? "The simultaneous occurrence of the bad economy and the Sept. 11 attacks which made people sit up and rethink their lives, has certainly contributed to this trend." Emily Feistritzer, President of the National Center for Education Information

30 How Effective are Alternative Licensure Teachers? Alternatively PREPARED teachers from good programs can perform as well as traditionally prepared teachers – eventually - if (1) given good induction and mentoring and (2) solid collateral coursework while they are in the first year or two of teaching. Michael Allen, Project Director,ECS Teaching Quality Policy Center

31 How Effective are Alternative Licensure Teachers? Alternatively LICENSED teachers, on the other hand, may not be as effective as licensed teachers teaching in their field of certification. Michael Allen, Project Director,ECS Teaching Quality Policy Center

32 How Effective are Alternative Licensure Teachers? Research comparing the effectiveness of traditional and alternative certification teachers has mixed results. For example: Lutz and Hutton (1989) evaluated the Dallas Independent School District's alternative certification program and found that,of the 54% who completed the intern year, that supervisors’ perceptions were positive. The Texas Education Agency evaluation reported (traditionally trained) beginning teachers as more knowledgeable than alternative teachers. Schram, Feiman-Nemser, and Ball (1990) did not find any significant difference between the two groups. Source: Alternative Teacher Certification--An Update (1991),

33 Teachers Matter: Polar Opposites Agree Linda Darling-Hammond and Checker Finn agree on two things: That smart, caring teachers can help students overcome background problems like poverty and limited English proficiency. That the sun will likely rise tomorrow! ECS Fall Steering Committee Meeting, Cheyenne, WY, November 1999.

34 State Data Collection on Teachers is Inadequate Current state data collection efforts tend to be disjointed State databases often fail to provide a comprehensive, longitudinal view of teacher career paths. Few states collect data on individuals who complete an alternative teacher training program Data often is not available on a teacher's undergraduate major or minor or on undergraduate performance. Source: SHEEO, Data Systems to Enhance Teacher Quality, 2003

35 ECS Recommendations on Alternative Licensure States with alternative route programs should: Provide solid induction and mentoring Require collateral coursework Give new teachers manageable placements Use incentives to get more experienced teachers to take the tough assignments Require rigorous data collection to aid in program evaluation for all alternative route programs

36 States should not : Regard alternative route programs as suppliers of teachers for tough schools Give new, alternatively prepared teachers the toughest job assignments Make alternative license program completion requirements less rigorous than traditional licensing routes ECS Recommendations on Alternative Licensure


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