With regard to teacher quality, Nancy Flanagan (2005) states as one of the main contributors to An Open Letter to President Bush on Teaching Quality, “Good teaching at all grade levels depends, first, on building relationships with students, forming classroom communities, then, identifying and transferring important knowledge, skills and dispositions in ways that make sense and are useful to kids.” When it comes to teacher quality, we often think of a teacher’s highest academic degree and how long he or she has been teaching.
However, a teacher’s ability to make the knowledge accessible to his or her students is equally important for quality instruction. In this respect, the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future (NCTAF) identifies attributes of teacher quality as follows: “a deep understanding of the subject taught and how children learn, knowledge of technology and demonstrated teaching skills necessary to help children achieve high standards, professional growth in pedagogy and content and the ability to instill a passion for learning in their students” (De Leon, 2003).
Description of NBPTS
In response to a report about a crumbling American education system described in A Nation at Risk (1983), the Carnegie Task Force on Teaching as a Profession suggested to establish a national board for professional teaching standards, which later became the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards
(NBPTS) in 1987. This board is “an independent, national nonprofit organization that works to measure teacher
performance and help teachers improve their practice,” said NBPTS President and CEO Joseph Aguerrebere (2011). In the policy statement, What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do, the National Board clearly states, “The National Board’s responsibility is not only to ensure that teachers who become National Board Certified meet its professional standards of commitment and competence, but also to maintain standards and assessments that are so well regarded that America’s accomplished teachers will decide to seek National Board Certification(2002).” As teachers are building a portfolio including four entries with student work samples, video recordings, and documented collaboration and then preparing for the assessment of their certificate area knowledge, they grow to become experts in teaching and leaders of learning communities by creating more collaborative environment among teachers and administrators, which define what qualified teachers would be like. … Read More