Alliance Brief Examines Need To Reform Teacher Preparation Programs To Ensure That Students Meet High Expectations
Washington, DC – The Alliance for Excellent Education released a brief today that offers a new vision for secondary teacher preparation that ensures teacher candidates possess the critical skills necessary to make certain that all students graduate from high school ready for college and careers. The brief, funded by MetLife Foundation, also outlines how federal policy can support stronger teacher preparation.
“The job of teaching has changed, but in many cases, the preparation of teacher candidates has not,” said Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia. “Too many high school educators are walking into the classroom on their first day without the skills they need to prepare students for college and careers. And they are facing a more diverse group of learners than teachers have ever faced in this country. Until the nation transforms the way it trains teachers, too many students will continue to receive a subpar education, with devastating personal and societal consequences.”
According to the brief, Teaching for a New World: Preparing High School Educators to Deliver College- and Career-Ready Instruction, educating all students to the high standards now required for success in college and careers requires a host of new skills that many secondary school teachers do not currently develop during pre-service preparation or in-service professional development. The brief identifies five critical areas for teachers to develop competency before they enter the classroom in order to be effective:
• the ability to work with diverse learners, including special education students and English language learners;
• the capacity to teach adolescent literacy skills regardless of the content area;
• the ability to effectively use assessment and data to impact teaching and learning;
• the ability to teach in specialized teaching environments, including urban and rural settings; and
• the ability to convey content knowledge to students in an clear manner, tailored to the academic discipline.
Specifically, it offers five ways that federal policy can focus on the preparation of highly effective teachers:
• focus on teacher performance instead of teacher education coursework;
• encourage the creation of performance-based assessments;
• increase the supply of high-quality teachers by supporting effective programs and closing ineffective programs;
• build and enhance robust data systems; and
• invest in research.
Teaching for a New World: Preparing High School Educators to Deliver College- and Career-Ready Instruction is available here
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MetLife Foundation supports education, health, civic and cultural organizations. It seeks to increase opportunities for young people to succeed, encourage leadership development for teachers and principals, and connect schools, families, colleges and communities. Its funding for education is informed by findings from the annual MetLife Survey of the American Teacher. For more information, visitwww.metlife.org.
The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC-based policy, research, and advocacy organization that works to make every child a graduate, prepared for postsecondary education and success in life. For more information about the Alliance for Excellent Education, please visit us here.