Welcome to the TQ Update, a quarterly newsletter dedicated to providing information and resources on teacher quality related issues.
Teaching Quality Policy Center News Back to top.
ECS will collaborate with the North Central
Regional Education Laboratory to consider the
possibilities of reworking the traditional
daily school schedule to better support
teachers in the most challenging schools. The
initiative is made possible through support
from the WASHINGTON MUTUAL FOUNDATION.
New Center Publications
Read about three big questions educators
should ask regarding No Child Left Behind
and HIGHLY QUALIFIED TEACHERS:
- How do states define a "highly qualified" teacher?
- How can schools accurately report on the percentage of "highly qualified" teachers they have?
- What are the different levels of teacher licensure, and do these different levels assure qualified teachers are in our nation's classrooms?
Don't forget to check out two recent
ECS Teaching Quality Policy Center
“Eight Questions on Teacher Preparation:
What Does the Research Say?" looks at
what 92 research studies tell us about
See ECS' database providing condensed
summaries of STATE TEACHER PREPARATION
POLICIES, links to the policies and other
relevant sources of information.
Back to top.
Upcoming Center Meetings/Events Back to top.
Register for the ECS FALL STEERING COMMITTEE
MEETING and join us for a reception on November
12 at the Virginia governor's mansion followed
by dinner at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
What States Are Doing
VIRGINIA Governor Mark R. Warner has
announced several initiatives to improve
teacher retention and recruitment,
Warner also proposed that up to 10 administrators
be trained as "turnaround specialists" and sent
into low-performing schools for a minimum of
- A mentoring program for first-year
teachers in hard-to-staff schools
- A statewide job fair
- An online job bank.
CONNECTICUT's Public Act 03-232, effective
July 2003, increases the post-retirement
earnings limit for re-employed, retired teachers
from 45% of the entry-level salary to 45% of
the maximum salary for the position. The new
law also eliminates such earning limits for
teachers in designated, subject-shortage areas.
Re-employed retired teachers must be offered
health insurance benefits, but may no longer
contribute to the retirement system or accrue
additional benefits during re-employment.
For additional information on other state
"retire-rehire" policies, see:
The CALIFORNIA Commission on Teacher
Credentialing had voted to phase out
emergency teaching permits and credential
waivers and to begin aligning the state's
teacher certification process with a
recently adopted state board of education
plan and the requirements of the No Child
Left Behind Act.
This action, however, has now been suspended
to allow the commission to collect more
information about the impact on school
districts and county offices of education.
MINNESOTA Governor Tim Pawlenty has announced
a new initiative aimed at recruiting and
retaining good teachers, including hiring
"super teachers" from either traditional or
nontraditional backgrounds and paying them
up to $100,000 per year, including bonuses,
based on their performance.
Also in MINNESOTA, the Minneapolis public
schools have been awarded $6.2 million by the
John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
to improve teaching and make Minneapolis a
national model for urban education.
From the loss of mentoring options, to the
demise of teacher recruitment programs and
unprecedented numbers of layoffs, budget
cuts in many states are hitting teachers
Back to top.
Good Reads Back to top.
The rules for becoming a "HIGHLY QUALIFIED"
teacher under the federal No Child Left
Behind Act are complex. The Southern Regional
Education Board recently compiled a summary
of what its 16 states are doing to ensure
every student is taught by a qualified teacher.
An editorial in the Startribune.com discusses
Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty's plan to create a
"SUPER TEACHER" PROGRAM at about a dozen pilot
sites where classroom educators could be paid up
to $100,000 for improving student achievement.
The author argues that several states have had
success with similar programs, but in some
cases student performance did not improve.
There exists longstanding precedent and strong
justification for creating a NATIONAL EDUCATION
MANPOWER PROGRAM, according to a new research
paper by Linda Darling-Hammond and Gary Sykes.
The authors argue that such a program for the
education sector should be modeled on U.S. medical
manpower efforts, which have long supplied doctors
to high-need communities and eased shortages in
specific health fields.
Many URBAN SCHOOL DISTRICTS lose out on
well-qualified applicants for vacant teaching
positions due to slow hiring practices, delays
in state budget timetables and teacher union
seniority rules, according to a recent report
by The New Teacher Project.
Timely and accurate data often are absent from
state policy discussions about teacher quality,
says a new paper from the State Higher Education
Executive Officers. The paper examines
DATA-COLLECTION SYSTEMS in 14 states and offers
advice to policymakers on how such systems can be
used to improve teacher recruitment and retention.
MALE TEACHERS are becoming an endangered species
in the classroom and represent only 21% of
all teachers, the National Education
Association (NEA) finds. According to the NEA, the
number of male teachers is now at a 40-year low.
Despite long hours and low pay teachers love
their profession, according to a new
National Education Association survey on the
professional and personal lives of the nation's
teachers. The TEACHER SURVEY also reports that
twice as many teachers have master's degrees
now as compared to the 1960s.
Critics are questioning the U.S. Department of
Education's recently announced $35 million,
multiyear allocation to the American Board for
Certification of Teacher Excellence's (ABCTE)
ALTERNATIVE TEACHER CREDENTIALING test that so
far has enlisted only a single state -- Pennsylvania.
ABCTE is likely to encounter further heat for its
announcement that it also will offer a "virtual"
mentoring program for novice educators.
Research suggests that the selectivity and prestige
of the institution where a teacher received his
or her degree has a positive effect on student
achievement, particularly at the secondary level,
a new study finds. The study examines the impact
of a variety of TEACHER CHARACTERISTICS on
Other Useful Web Sites Back to top.
Policymakers and educators are increasingly
turning to international comparisons to assess
how well national systems of education are
performing. The NATIONAL CENTER FOR EDUCATION
STATISTICS' new INTERNATIONAL INDICATORS Web
site provides users with comparative data on
such issues as student teacher ratios and
VISITING INTERNATIONAL FACULTY, a private firm,
is currently the largest single sponsor of
International Focus Back to top.
The United Kingdom's National Audit
Office has completed an in-depth COMPARISON
OF EDUCATION in the United Kingdom and nine
other comparable, industrialized nations. Also
presented is a concise analysis of teacher
preparation and employment in the nine
As many as 10,000 FOREIGN TEACHERS currently
work in U.S. public school systems on
"non-immigrant" or cultural exchange visas. The
dearth of U.S. educators in certain specialty
areas and a shortage of those willing to work
in urban schools is creating a growing global
market for teachers.
American educators advocate to include the
study of GLOBAL ISSUES in the curriculum,
but do not often think to seek interaction
with other educators from around the world,
according to a recent Phi Delta Kappan article.
The article looks at a number of networks that
can help connect schools from around the world.
Submit requests for copies of the article,
“Global Education as A Worldwide Movement,"
Additional links to organizations that focus on
global education and/or global issues are available
on the INTERDEPENDENCE PRESS Web site.
Teaching quality is part of the Teaching Quality and Leadership Institute. The mission of the Institute is to provide resources to help state policymakers shape education policy on finding, keeping and developing highly effective teachers and education leaders.
To read more about Teaching Quality,
visit the ECS Issue Site on Teaching