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August 2016 State Policy Recap

Ed Prep Matters is pleased to bring you this special feature on state policy and AACTE state chapter activity. For similar recap articles from earlier months, browse the “State Directions” section of the blog.

Overview of State Policy Activity

In August, legislatures actively met in only two states, Illinois and Alaska; most other states’ legislative sessions had adjourned. No educator preparation-related bills were introduced during the month, although California enacted one bill into law that will allow city or county boards of education to issue a temporary teaching certificate to an individual with an existing certificate, including one from out of state.

NCSL Report Recommends State Actions to Improve Education

At the recent National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Legislative Summit, the organization’s International Education Study Group released the report No Time to Lose: How to Build a World-Class Education System State by State. This report culminates a 2-year study by a bipartisan group of state legislators and legislative staff examining the highest performing countries on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) to discover common themes across their policies and practices.

Custom E-mail Alerts Available Through AACTE State Policy Tracker

I am excited to announce an expansion of services through AACTE’s State Policy Tracker, which now provides not only a searchable database of legislation and regulations but also state-specific e-mail alerts for any interested state chapters and member institutions.

tracker-map

The State Policy Tracker is an online tool, launched last November, for member institutions and state chapters to track state legislation and regulations related to educator preparation. Beginning in December 2015, we piloted the e-mail alert program with 17 of AACTE’s state chapters (in Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Wisconsin) and two individual member institutions (Bank Street College and Western Governors University). This pilot program distributed state-specific alerts using information from the tracker on pertinent state policy affecting educator preparation.

State Legislators Want Input from Teacher Educators

Last week, I joined a small group of AACTE staff attending the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) Legislative Summit with over 5,000 state legislators, legislative staff, and trade associations.
One key takeaway from our interactions with state legislators and staff is that they are eager to hear from educator preparation programs. Some of the topics that state legislators referenced as their priorities:

  • Examining licensure requirements
  • Offering more pathways into the teaching profession
  • Boosting the rigor of educator preparation programs
  • Aligning the educator pipeline with school districts’ needs and challenges

ACSR Issues State Policy Statements to Enhance Educator Preparation

The Advisory Council of State Representatives (ACSR) is pleased to announce a new consensus document, the State Policy Statements to Enhance Educator Preparation, developed by AACTE state chapter leaders and members to support the advocacy work of educator preparation providers (EPPs).

ACSR leaders representing more than 1,100 EPPs participated in a collaborative process to develop the document, agreeing on key statements under the following three priority areas:

July 2016 State Policy Recap

Ed Prep Matters is pleased to bring you this special feature on state policy and AACTE state chapter activity. For a summary of the year prior to the summer, see this article.

Overview of State Policy Activity

Only a handful of state legislatures actively met in July, as over 40 state legislative sessions had adjourned for the year. No educator preparation-related bills were introduced, although Illinois enacted two bills into law. One of them modifies the professional development requirements for educator license renewal. The other law allows a principal endorsement to be added to an existing professional educator license if the individual meets certain requirements, such as having taught for at least 4 years.

June 2016 State Policy Recap

Ed Prep Matters is pleased to bring you this special feature on state policy and AACTE state chapter activity. For a summary of the year prior to June, see this article.

Overview of State Policy Activity

In June, state policy activity slowed down to a crawl, as more than 30 state legislative sessions have adjourned for the year. Currently, only nine state legislatures are in their 2016 session, while three state legislatures are in a special session.

Nine education-related bills in four states–Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania–were introduced in June. These bills covered issues including offering loan forgiveness for educators employed in “failing schools,” expanding pathways into the teaching profession by modifying certification requirements for substitute teachers, and creating a tiered licensure structure for educators.

TeachNY Report Provides Foundation for Statewide Collaboration on Teacher Preparation

The TeachNY Advisory Council, convened last year by the State University of New York (SUNY), published last month a set of recommendations to address the most pressing challenges facing the state’s teacher development pipeline. The dozens of policy recommendations and innovative strategies for teacher recruitment, preparation, and career support are now providing a roadmap for a collaborative campaign between SUNY and the New York State Education Department (NYSED).

“If we take our 60 recommendations and the really hot buttons that we’re talking about right now in terms of policy and execution, and we take them to scale across the SUNY system, we will do good for New York,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher in an interview with The Chronicle of Higher Education. What’s more, Zimpher said, the system hopes to “work with other states and with other policy makers, too, to take what we’re learning across the country.”

State Chiefs Urged to Consult Stakeholders — Including EPPs — for ESSA Implementation

The Council of Chief State School Officers has released a new guide for state policy makers to engage stakeholders on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) implementation, and educator preparation providers (EPPs) are among the two dozen groups recommended for consultation. Although the guide indicates that EPP input is required only for state Title II grant applications, it encourages states to “not stop there” but rather engage whatever perspectives best represent the state’s interests. AACTE encourages its members and state chapters to get involved with their state’s ESSA implementation in as many areas and as early as possible.

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