NEPC Review: Within Our Grasp: Achieving Higher Admissions Standards in Teacher Prep
Based on a review of GPA and SAT/ACT requirements at 221 institutions in 25 states, a new report from the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) recommends that states, institutions of higher education, and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) maintain or establish a higher bar for entry into teacher preparation programs. The NCTQ report suggests that boosting teacher candidate entry requirements in ways they advocate would significantly improve teacher quality in the U.S.. Yet the report does not provide the needed supports for its assertions or recommendations. In addition, the report makes multiple unsupported and unfounded claims about the impact on teacher diversity of raising admissions requirements for teacher candidates, about public perceptions of teaching and teacher education, and about attracting more academically able teacher candidates. Each claim is based on one or two cherry-picked citations while ignoring the substantial body of research that either provides conflicting evidence or shows that the issues are much more complex and nuanced than the report suggests. Ultimately the report offers little guidance for policymakers or institutions.