Updated Teaching Standards Create Better Training Experiences

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To the Editor:

I was encouraged to read about the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards' modernization ("Revamped National Board Process Stirs Teachers' Interest," Jan. 11, 2017).

I connected with the NBPTS in the early 1990s, when I was working in administration for the Broward County school district in Florida, with a focus on standards and teacher education. The national board was trying out its new standards in select districts around the country, and I agreed to supervise a test center for the board in Florida for two of the standards. As I recall, several dozen teachers participated, but very few achieved certification during that first try.Although participation was light in those early days, outcomes were powerful. The NBPTS train-the-trainer model created professional learning communities around validated teaching standards. The model promoted a kind of shared ingenuity for teachers in common license areas, reducing teacher isolation.

I applaud the more efficient and less costly model that the board has recently approved. The NBPTS has created a splendid standards-based model of professional development. In my experience as an educator and administrator, and in my current work as a consultant, this model yields measurable effects on both participants and students that are far superior to many other kinds of "sit 'n' git" professional-development strategies I still see regularly in my school district visits.

The letter writer is a former associate superintendent for the Broward County, Fla., school district, where he oversaw human resources and training.

Thomas P. Johnson
Education Consultant
Harwich Port, Mass.

Vol. 36, Issue 21, Page 20

Published in Print: February 15, 2017, as Updated Teaching Standards Create Better Training Experiences
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