By Teresa Washut Heck
Most of us have vivid memories of our student teaching experience. Whether these images are positive or negative, they played a significant role in preparing us to become teachers. The old model of student teaching often had the teacher candidates spending their initial weeks as silent observers, gradually assuming the role of teacher, leading up to “full responsibility” in the classroom. Clinical teachers rarely assisted or vacated the room, letting the candidate learn his or her craft alone.
via A New Student Teaching Model for Pairing Interns with Clinical Teachers | Edutopia.
Congratulations to all the teacher interns who participated in the culmination event on May 15 and received their certificates!
via Congratulations to all the teacher interns who participated in the culmination e….
By Corinne Muelrath / commentary
California, now more than ever, is facing an urgent need for qualified and talented professionals to enter our teaching workforce. At a time when one-third of California’s educators are nearing retirement, school districts are going to need the thousands of teachers entering the profession through alternative certification programs, which allow candidates to teach in the classroom while simultaneously earning their teaching credential. This is not the time for hasty policy decisions that threaten to further dismantle the state’s Learning to Teach System. Eliminating guaranteed funding will result in increased tuition fees for those entering the teaching profession.
via California needs alternative certification now more than ever – by Corinne Muelrath / commentary.
By Kathryn Baron
The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing will now require non-credentialed Teach For America teachers and other intern teachers to receive more training in how to teach English learners and to get weekly on-the-job mentoring and supervision.
The Commission’s unanimous vote last week followed two hours of public testimony and debate among commissioners over 14 separate recommendations aimed at improving the rigor and preparation of interns to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to teach the state’s 1.4 million English learners.
via State toughens regs for interns teaching English learners – by Kathryn Baron.
By Kathryn Baron
The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing signaled Thursday its intention to increase training requirements for intern teachers, including Teach for America members, before they’re allowed to teach any of the state’s 1.4 million students who are English learners.
At a packed, highly charged meeting in Sacramento, Commission members staked out a compromise position to avert threatened lawsuits from supporters, who had urged the Commission to severely restrict districts’ ability to hire intern teachers, and opponents, who argued that intern teachers, while comprising less than a quarter of the new teachers in California, play an important role, especially where there are shortages, and have proven to be effective.
via Higher standards coming for state’s intern teachers – by Kathryn Baron.
Under proposals the state’s teacher credentialing agency is set to consider today, school districts would need to show on a case-by-case basis that no fully credentialed teachers are available before they resort to less-qualified educators, and under-prepared teachers could serve a maximum of three years instead of five.
The Commission on Teacher Credentialing is weighing the changes after expressing concern that under-prepared teachers disproportionately serve students who are living in poverty and learning English.
“Until that changes, we need to tighten up our process a little bit,” Commissioner Kathleen Harris said at a September commission meeting, where possible regulatory changes for under-prepared teachers were first discussed.
via State considers shorter service for under-prepared teachers.
There’s been a lot of chatter in Washington lately on whether Congress will decide to extend language allowing teachers in alternative-certification programs to be considered “highly qualified” for an additional two years.
The question of how—and whether—the federal government should encourage alternative-certification programs is likely to be an area of debate whenever Congress actually gets around to reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. They’re not there yet, not even close, and won’t be for awhile.
So, for now, issues like how to interpret the No Child Left Behind law’s “highly qualified” provision(which includes having a bachelor’s degree in the subject they teach and state certification) are being dealt with in spending bills and regulation. Way more background on the issue here.
In fact, last week, two different coalitions sent letters up to Capitol Hill expressing totally different sentiments on whether Congress should continue to allow teachers in alternative certification to be considered “highly qualified.”
via House Subcommittee Examines Alternative Certification.
The disability advocacy community has been worried that a provision in federal law about who is considered a highly qualified teacher would be perpetuated as lawmakers take up new spending bills for the coming fiscal year.
Earlier this year, the Senate merely left the door open to extending a provision that allows teachers still working on their certification to be considered “highly qualified”—a designation created by 2001’s No Child Left Behind law. The law says teachers must already be certified to qualify, but Education Department regulations created about the law allowed for teachers in alternative routes to be considered highly qualified, even if they were still working on their certification. For example, people in the classroom as part of the Teach for America training program would fall into this category.
The department’s regulations on these alternative routes were set to expire, but as my colleague Alyson Klein explains over at the Politics K-12 blog, the House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday extended the provision through the end of the 2014-15 school year.
via House Extends Labeling of Trainee Teachers as ‘Highly Qualified’.
Special education advocates are worried that a provision in federal law about who is considered a highly qualified teacher could be perpetuated when the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee meets today.
Although a Senate subcommittee didn’t address the issue during a vote about the budget on Tuesday, groups including the National Center on Learning Disabilities, Easter Seals, and the National Disability Rights Network say the issue isn’t dead just yet.
In essence, the provision allows teachers still working on their certification to be considered “highly qualified”—a designation created by 2001’s No Child Left Behind law. The law says teachers must already be certified to qualify, but Education Department regulations created about the law allowed for teachers in alternative routes to be considered highly qualified, even if they were still working on their certification. For example, people in the classroom as part of the Teach for America training program would fall into this category.
via Advocates: Don’t Call Teachers-in-Training ‘Highly Qualified’.
Thousands of teachers in training in California can remain in their classrooms and be regularly assigned to low-income and minority areas at least through mid-2013, because Congress approved it, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.
The decision came from the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, which had ruled in September 2010 that the state was violating federal law by classifying the inexperienced instructors as “highly qualified.”
via Federal appeals court OKs teachers in training.
The percentage of California educators reaching retirement age is rising rapidly, while the number of newly credentialed teachers has decreased for the seventh year in a row, new reports show.
via State faces teacher shortage as more retire, fewer enter profession.
By Maribel Heredia, Plaintiff in Lawsuit Against the Department of Education
Four years ago, my son Joey — who was in first grade at the time — came home from school and said, “Mommy, my teacher wasn’t there today. She went to college.”
via Why Are Many of Our Children’s Teachers Still Students Themselves?.