The Educational Testing Service, which administers the National Teachers Examinations, has raised the scores of 49,000 examinees who took two of its teacher-licensing tests after a review of the tests revealed that six multiple-choice questions had more than one correct answer.
Two of the questions were among more than 700 that appeared on several versions of the core-battery tests of general knowledge administered between October 1984 and June 1990. When the scores were raised, an additional 998 examinees met the minimum-score requirements set by some of the states in which the examinees were interested in teaching.
The other four questions were on the n.t.e. physical-education specialty-area test given between November 1989 and February 1990. Scores for 166 examinees were raised, allowing one additional candidate to meet a state's passing score.
The tests were rescored after reviews conducted by the e.t.s. and independent experts found "sufficient consensus" to approve dropping the questions and revising the test scores, according to the e.t.s.
The Maryland State Teachers Association, after threatening to sue the state over new certification requirements for teachers, was claiming victory last week in its attempt to persuade the Maryland Board of Education to reconsider its decision.
At its Sept. 26 meeting, the board voted to adopt an alternative-certification policy that would permit college graduates with a B average or better in their major subjects to teach in elementary and secondary schools. The program also requires candidates to take 90 clock hours of pedagogy during their first year and to be supervised by a mentor teacher.
The teachers' union charged that the board's final decision on the new certification procedure violated the state's open-meetings law, because the board made substantive changes in the proposed alternate route without providing advance notice.
The initial proposal before the board would have allowed candidates to teach only secondary school and would have required 180 clock hours of pedagogy.
But despite the union's assertion of victory, a spokesman for the state education department said the board would not change its policy.
Instead, the board plans to vote in December on the same program after publishing the new regulations and allowing for a 30-day comment period.
A group of teachers who work as entrepreneurs, contracting with school districts to provide instructional services, has formed a national organization to assist teachers who wish to work independently.
The American Association of Educators in Private Practice, with offices in Milwaukee, will help licensed teachers with marketing, contracts, business advice, and other types of support needed to get started as entrepreneurs.
The new association also is sponsoring a conference Nov. 10 in Indianapolis to examine how private-practice services can be integrated into the programs of traditional school districts.
The concept of entrepreneurial teachers was developed in the mid-1980's by educators at the University of Minnesota's Hubert Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. (See Education Week, Sept. 13, 1989.)
For more information about the organization and the conference, write to the a.a.e.p.p., 1126 South 70th St., Suite S106, Milwaukee, Wis. 53214, or call (414) 475-2436.
When teachers went on strike in Yakima, Wash., last month, the school district engaged a new kind of instructor to replace its absentee workforce: It aired videotapes of teachers giving lectures on local-access cable television and published lessons in the local newspaper.
The National Education Association, which cautioned its members to be wary of future videotaping, characterized the experience as "the first strike of the 21st century."
A biology teacher and wrestling coach from the Montgomery County, Md., school district is the first recipient of the National Football League's Teacher Award.
The n.f.l. presented James Douglas, a teacher at Walt Whitman High School, with $2,500 and donated $5,000 to a scholarship fund at his school.
Mr. Douglas was nominated for the award by one of his former students--Anthony Dilweg of the Green Bay Packers.
Each month, the nfl will select a teacher who has made an impact on a player's life. At the end of the season, the league will give $5,000 to the nfl Teacher of the Year, donate $10,000 to the teacher's school, and recognize the winning teacher at the Pro Bowl in Honolulu.
Pennsylvania plans to evaluate the success of its "Governor's School for Teaching" to see whether the summer program encouraged teenagers to enter the teaching profession.
The 64 high-school sophomores and juniors who participated in the program will be contacted this fall, in six months, and in five years to determine what impact the program had on their career plans.
The students, chosen from more than 300 who applied, attended a five-week residential program at Millersville University.--ab & kd
Vol. 10, Issue 06