Court Upholds ‘Highly Qualified’ Teacher Rules
A federal court in California has sided with the U.S. Department of Education, ruling that teachers who enter schools through alternative teacher-preparation programs and are still working toward certification can be labeled “highly qualified.”
The No Child Left Behind Act requires teachers to have full state licensure, in addition to a bachelor’s degree and evidence that they know each subject they teach. But regulations put forth by the Education Department in 2002 allow uncertified candidates in alternative-route programs to teach for up to three years while seeking certification.
A group of parents, students, and community groups filed suit in U.S. District Court in San Francisco last August, arguing that Congress defined “highly qualified” to mean teachers who meet a state’s “full” or most complete level of certification. They contended that many of those teachers-in-training end up in schools that are low-performing and enroll higher concentrations...
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