Seven States will Pilot Teacher Preparation Changes

ccssoSeven states announced ambitious efforts to make it tougher to get into teacher training programs – and tougher to get a license after graduating. Under a two-year pilot program created by the Council of Chief State School Officers, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, and Washington will pilot the teacher preparation changes.

Among the steps they’re contemplating:

  • Restricting admission to teacher prep programs to students in the top half of their high school class or those with GPAs of at least 3.0,
  • challenging aspiring educators with rigorous exams in the subjects they will be teaching, and
  • requiring them to demonstrate their ability to instruct diverse groups of students before granting them licenses.

“This is a big deal,” said Dennis Van Roekel, president of the National Education Association, which helped develop the initiative.

Participating states, which won their positions through an application process, will receive assistance in getting their plan off the ground and will receive $100,000 during the first year from CCSSO, and a second-year amount contingent on how much progress they make. Progress will be judged by states’ ability to revise or pass new policies, develop support for the changes, and implement their plans.

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