NEPC Resources on Teacher Education, Quality, and Professional Development
This NEPC Policy Memo presents the text of a letter from Drs. Burris and Welner to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. The letter was invited by Secretary Duncan during a phone conversation with Dr. Burris. It offers concrete guiding principles for evaluation of educators and suggestions for a way forward.
The research on which the Los Angeles Times relied for its August 2010 teacher effectiveness reporting was demonstrably inadequate to support the published rankings. Using the same L.A. Unified School District data and the same methods as the Times, this study probes deeper and finds the earlier research to have serious weaknesses.
Given the experience to date with an overwhelming focus on student achievement scores as a basis for high-stakes decisions, policymakers would do well to pause and carefully examine the issues that make teacher assessment so complex before implementing an assessment plan.
Teach For America (TFA) aims to address teacher shortages by sending graduates from elite colleges, most of whom do not have a background in education, to teach in low-income rural and urban schools for a two-year commitment. The impact of these graduates is hotly debated by those who, on the one hand, see this as a way to improve the supply of teachers by enticing some of America‘s top students into teaching and those who, on the other hand, see the program as a harmful dalliance into the lives of low-income students who most need highly trained and highly skilled teachers.
NEPC Review: An Evaluation of Teachers Trained Through Different Routes to Certification: Final Report
The certification of teachers through programs other than those based in colleges and universities, rare before 1980, has become a prominent part of the teaching profession. Alternatively certified teachers are appearing in increasing numbers in private and charter schools and in poor urban neighborhoods where school districts have difficulty finding regularly certified teachers.
Contracting out—-using private contractors to provide support services—-has received increasing attention in the nation’s public schools. In a climate promoting market models and privatization, the increasing popularity of school choice and education management organizations has encouraged countless vendors to attempt privatizing a wide array of public school services. The largest and most visible efforts have targeted food, transportation and custodial services.
This series of policy briefs provides a comprehensive examination school choice in the United States.
The academic success of any school depends on the instruction provided by high quality teachers. Yet the impact of school choice on teachers and teaching has received less attention than other components of school operations. This brief addresses that lack by reviewing teacher quality in choice schools and differences in work environments across school types. It also includes the scant information available about what impact school choice may have upon the teacher labor market.
A recent movement toward data-driven decision making in education policy has led many state and local education agencies to scrutinize the condition of their data systems and determine how to use data in more sophisticated ways. This report examines the changing use of data in one area of education policy decisions: teacher quality.
Institution: Wisconsin Center for Education Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Authors: Patricia H. Hinchey and Karen Cadiero-Kaplan Institution: Penn State University and San Diego State University Source: Journal for Critical Education Policy Studies Recent concerted efforts of government and business to privatize public education are well-documented. The authors argue that these efforts will further undermine teaching as a highly-skilled profession with union support.
Author: David Berliner Institution: Arizona State University Source: Journal of Teacher Education In this article, EPRU Fellow David Berliner looks at testing for teacher quality and finds that some current tests are inadequate.
Publisher Journal of Learning Disabilities, 37(3)
Page Numbers 248-255
This series of policy briefs examining education reform in Florida finds that the results of the state's aggressive school-reform program have been mixed, and that the state's actions often do not match its rhetoric when it comes to implementing reforms.
Each of the following sections can be found in downloadable format below. The separate Executive Summaries can be found here.
Source: The State Forum State leaders convened to define Arizona's critical need for teachers and to frame a collaborative response for recruitment, credentialing, and retention of high quality teachers for Arizona classrooms.
Author: Debra Viadero Source: Education Week Research by David C. Berliner and Linda Darling-Hammond on whether certified teachers are more effective is cited in Education Week.
Institution: Arizona State University
Arizona employers say the Grade 10 AIMS Mathematics exam asks questions that are not representative of math skills actually used by their employees.
Institution: Arizona State University
A Wisconsin program to improve student achievement in kindergarten through third grade may be missing opportunities to increase student gains due to ineffective use of the professional development requirements of the SAGE law.
At the center of almost every proposal circulating today to raise the quality of teaching is more teacher testing. The tests that the vast majority of states now require as a condition for entry into teaching and other public school professions, however, fail to raise standards of teaching and learning, while sharply reducing the numbers of qualified teachers from ethnic minorities.
Inclusion of Limited-English-Proficient Students in Rhode Island's Grade 4 Mathematics Performance Assessment
Publisher Los Angeles: Center for the Study of Evaluation
Summary This study examines the effect of accommodations on the participation and performance levels of limited-English-proficient students in the Rhode Island Grade 4 Mathematics Performance Assessment.
Conceptual Knowledge Falls through the Cracks: Complexities of Learning to Teach Mathematics for Understanding
Publisher Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 24
Page Numbers 8-40
Publisher Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 23
Page Numbers 194-222
Summary This article analyzes from several vantage points a classroom lesson in which a student teacher was unsuccessful in providing a conceptually based justification for the standard division-of-fractions algorithm. The authors attempt to understand why the lesson failed, what it reveals about learning to teach, and what the implications are for mathematics teacher education.
Conceptual Frameworks for Research Circa 1991: Ideas from a Cultural Anthropologist; Implications for Mathematics Education Rese
Publisher Blacksburg, VA: Psychology of Mathematics Education
Summary What is a conceptual framework and why all the fuss about whether you have one for your research project? Is it simply politically correct to have a conceptual framework or is there more to it? This paper discusses the value of explicit conceptual frameworks for educational research, and what difference conceptual frameworks might make in mathematics education research.