Most states set teacher-quality policies that hinder districts’ ability to identify and retain high-caliber teachers, according to a report from the Washington-based National Council on Teacher Quality.
“The third through fifth years of teaching represent an opportunity lost for the health of the teaching profession,” NCTQ President Kate Walsh says in the introduction. “Many new teachers leave at this juncture, just at the time that they are becoming consistently effective.”
That’s also often the point, she adds, when districts confer tenure “absent either the reflection or evidence that this important decision merits.”
The report examines state policies governing systems for identifying effective teaching, granting tenure, evaluating performance, and awarding pay, bonuses, and benefits. It grades states on an A-to-F scale.
South Carolina, with an overall grade of B-minus, came in first among the states, largely because of strong policies for removing ineffective teachers from the classroom.
The District of Columbia, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont received overall grades of Fs. Most states earned Cs and Ds.
A version of this article appeared in the February 04, 2009 edition of Education Week