• AACTE 70th Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD

Posts Tagged ‘state policy’

IES Study of Okla. Reaffirms Challenges of Recruiting, Retaining Rural Educators

A new study from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest has reaffirmed many of the challenges related to recruiting and retaining educators in rural areas. The report, Indicators of Successful Teacher Recruitment and Retention in Oklahoma Rural School Districts (download PDF here), examines data spanning a decade in Oklahoma districts, more than 70% of which are rural.

The analysis finds that two key influences on teacher retention are compensation and teachers’ level of responsibility at their school. Numerous other factors affecting retention are catalogued in the appendices of the report, organized into categories of teacher, district, and community-based variables. Educator preparation programs that collaborate with rural districts may want to review the study’s findings for insights that might be applied to their own local challenges.

SREB Commission Issues Recommendations for Teacher Preparation Data Systems

A commission made up of college of education deans, state legislators, university presidents, heads of postsecondary systems, state and district superintendents, and leaders of nationwide organizations has released a report presenting recommendations for state policy related to teacher preparation data systems. This Teacher Preparation Commission of the Southern Regional Education Board, a nonprofit organization that works with states to improve public education and support state policy makers, is charged with developing and identifying state recommendations to improve teacher preparation programs.

More Than the Numbers – Teacher Preparation Data Systems: State Policy and Recommendations, the Commission’s first report, focuses on how to build strong statewide data systems for teacher preparation drawing on policy models in three states – Louisiana, North Carolina, and Tennessee. In Louisiana, the report acknowledges the work of the Board of Regents and the Louisiana Teacher Preparation Program Dashboard for promoting data in a more accessible and transparent way. In North Carolina, the report praises the University of North Carolina Educator Quality Dashboard. In Tennessee, the State Board of Education, Tennessee Department of Education, and Tennessee Higher Education Commission redesigned the state’s Teacher Preparation Report Card to provide an interactive tool for aspiring teachers. Other practices that the report praises are data systems’ ability to follow teachers through their careers, focus on outcome measures, break down data “silos,” and make data more accessible.

Using AACTE Advocacy Resources in a Critical Policy Analysis Class

This month’s members-only Federal Update webinars are today and tomorrow, September 19 and 20 – or just view the recording in our archive if you miss them! The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

Over the summer of 2017, I integrated a valuable new asset into my doctoral-level Critical Policy Analysis class: advocacy resources from AACTE. From the members-only webinars to downloadable advocacy guides, these materials informed my students’ discussion of policy items pertinent to not only Illinois but the nation at large. They also provided current, practical information and tools for students to become more engaged in advocacy outside of class.

Report Highlights Benefits, Challenges of State License Reciprocity

Today, the Education Commission of the States (ECS), a national organization of state education policy leaders, released a report that reviews state policies related to teacher license reciprocity. While states are facing educator pipeline challenges, the report finds that teacher licensure systems are intended to ensure educator quality, but have the potential of limiting cross-state mobility that could cause harm teacher attrition and retention.

The report explores teacher license reciprocity – in which a candidate who possesses an out-of-state license can earn a license in a new state based on state requirements. At the national level, the report references the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) Interstate Agreement, which collects agreements between NASDTEC member states to understand which licenses are transferable and what additional requirements might be needed. At the state level, the report finds that since last year, 11 states have enacted new laws or regulations that facilitate teacher license reciprocity. Two states – Arizona and Nevada – became full reciprocity states by enacting new laws that remove barriers for licensure. Two additional states – Oklahoma and Delaware – passed new laws that waive certain assessment requirements for out-of-state candidates.

‘Playbook’ Offers Roadmap for State Policy to Transform Educator Preparation

This week, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) released Transforming Educator Preparation: Lessons Learned From Leading States, a playbook for how states can improve educator preparation based on the experience of the Network for Transforming Educator Preparation (NTEP).

States that participated in NTEP – a multiyear effort to identify policies that effectively support the preparation of profession-ready teachers – were California, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, and Washington.

Massachusetts Chapter Members, AACTE Staff Engage at Legislative Summit

Last month, AACTE staff hosted an exhibit at the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) Legislative Summit in Boston, Massachusetts. We also invited leaders of the local AACTE state chapter, the Massachusetts Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (MACTE), to join us in the exhibit booth to share their work with attendees. Over 5,000 state legislators, state legislative staff, and trade association representatives attended the conference.

As I learned from last year’s NCSL Legislative Summit (see my takeaways here), state legislators are eager to receive input from teacher educators. One recurring theme from my conversations with state legislators this year was that they are unfamiliar with the major state policy levers pertaining to educator preparation – accreditation, licensure, and program approval. It was good for AACTE staff and MACTE leaders to interact with attendees from dozens of states, including many members of state legislatures’ education committees.

Webinar Highlights Resources for Educators in Hurricane-Affected Regions

The U.S. Department of Education (ED), along with relevant federal and state agencies, hosted a webinar last week to provide emergency-response resources to districts and schools serving hurricane-affected regions.

Officials on the webinar included representatives from ED, the National Center for Homeless Education (NCHE), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and state education officials in Texas, Louisiana, and Florida. The webinar largely focused on the requirements in the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, which outlines the procedures for identifying homeless students and the resources schools must make available to homeless students.

Collaboration and Compromise: The Key to Good Policy Making

The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

The Legislative Long Session in North Carolina this year was, in many ways, a productive one for education, generating a number of consequential bills that became law.  Included in the slate was the reintroduction of the Teaching Fellows program, thanks to a collaborative effort led by Senator Chad Barefoot and the North Carolina Association of Colleges and Teacher Educators (NCACTE).

Louisiana Tech Leads Transformation of Student Teaching With TEAM Model

This article is the first in a series of three showcasing the transformation of preservice field experiences at Louisiana Tech University. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of AACTE.

With a vision of quality, rich field experiences connected to theory and practice for many years, Louisiana Tech University was well positioned to chart a path in the early years of Louisiana’s Believe and Prepare initiative to transform traditional student teaching to a full-year clinical residency. Already, the redesigned model is having a positive impact on teacher preparation and engagement, not only in our programs but throughout the state.

Lessons From ECS Forum: Ongoing Engagement Critical as New State Policy Makers Take Office

On behalf of AACTE, I recently attended the annual National Forum on Education Policy of the Education Commission of the States (ECS), a national organization of state education policy leaders. The more than 550 attendees at the forum included governors, state education chiefs, chairs of state legislatures’ education committees, and higher education executives, many of whom were new to their position. In fact, one of my main takeaways from the conference was the high level of recent turnover in states’ positions for education decision makers – and the associated need for educators to maintain outreach efforts to connect with them.

Over the past 2 years, there has been drastic leadership change for state legislators, chief state school officers, and governors. In 2016, elections were held for 86 of the 98 partisan state legislative chambers and for 6 of the 13 elected chief state school officers. Furthermore, the average tenure of a chief state school officer is approximately 2½ years. In 2017, 36 states will hold elections for their governors, at least 16 of which must be new due to term limits.

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