Monday, March 23, 2015

Board update on teacher licensure

Chester: Board has a role here, sets regulation around licensure
"ultimately we'd like to make sure that our educators" are good at creating student learning
creating spaces "where students thrive" not only cognatively, but not least of all cognatively
"are our kids making good gains, year to year"
"what do we know about the kinds of classrooms that they're running"
measures of teacher credentials: transcripts, MTEL scores, courses taken
measures of teacher knowledge: the above plus National Board, value college degree, literacy
"want to know that you've got strong moral character"
starting point when we start to conceptionize
"how can we be as confident as possible throught the licensure" that we're creating environments in which youngsters thrive?
handoff to DESE staff
fit current schema under categories of evidence
Sagan asks how moral character is measured: CORI check, response
someone mentions that there's an affidavit as part of application
Sagan "not sure I'd call that moral character"
Roach: reference checks at district level
McKenna: really drill down on character at district level
back to presentation:
MTEL: literacy, subject knowledge, pedagogy
plus performance assessment done by program
for professional stage: three years under initial license; induction/mentoring; Master's degree
practice is a "latent statutory requirement"
McKenna asks about backlog on teacher licensure: "we busted the backlog" of licensure
Sagan: are we going to maintain that or are we going to have a budget problem? "Under my watch, Chairman Sagan, we do have a process"
"What sort of evidence should we ask for for these different categories" is what DESE is asking now
for renewal: professional licensure
higher numbers of preliminary licenses in areas that are high need (who have no ed prep programs)
McKenna: "how do we justify giving a license to someone who has no experience and no preparation in elementary school?"
response: how do we make sure that we have people who are ready to make impact on the first day?
looking at evidence on the table about what we're doing, what's working "and if the license is relevant"
pass rates data on disparate rates from those who are white and of color
actions taken by DESE as a result: communication and literacy skills test was redeveloped
improved transparency on technical qualities of test (have made reports available on the website)
statistical analysis to see if different test takers perform differently on different items
hey, anyone know if they do this on MCAS? Or will on PARCC?
"disturbing gap" among test takers in pass rates (and I have the chart which I will post later)
Short version; in 13-14 pass rate was:

  • all 84%
  • whites 85%
  • blacks 59%
  • Hispanic 73%
  • Asian/ Pacific Islander 77%
and that bears out in subject matter tests, as well
note vast disparity in who is taking the test; within subject tests:
  • 21,837 took tests over all
  • of those 16,454 were white
  • 705 were black
  • 805 Hispanic
  • 575 Asian/ Pacific Islander
Noyce asking where people are coming from and which are most successful: DESE doesn't have it offhand but will look
Willyard: how are we getting more people into teaching?
DESE; outreach and diverse candidates in programs; also highlighting how programs are helping candidates take and pass MTEL

Performance Assessment for Leaders (which they of course are abbreviating PAL) for principals
have to complete tasks this year, next year have to pass them
  • set a vision for school improvement
  • development a professional learning culture within a school
  • observing, assessing, and supporting teacher effectiveness
  • leadership for family engagement and community involvement
have heard "that it's very real and authentic" about what they will be asked to do

McKenna: back to item analysis
plan is to do annual analysis, yes
McKenna: has there ever been predictability in the test?
"not appropriate for licensure test, which is pass/fail test" not like SAT which is designed to predict performance
McKenna: except that I remember that your SAT can predict your MTEL
Sagan: asks if gender cut would make any difference
Have not done that analysis
Sagan "happy to see a test that lots of people fail, but don't want to see a test" that particular groups are failing out of proportion
Chester: can be much more ambitious

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