Teachers' Trainers Must Make the Grade, Too

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

HOUSTON (AP) - Texas is among the first states to toughen standards for colleges of education.

Under a proposed new rating system, the programs would be held accountable for a graduate's effectiveness on the job -- especially on student achievement.

The State Board for Educator Certification gave initial approval to the rules last month and is expected to finalize them in February.

Doug Palmer, Dean of the College of Education and Human Development at Texas A&M, said the idea that we ought to be preparing teachers that help students learn is a reasonable notion. But he says the challenge is to do it in a thoughtful manner.

Texas has 177 educator-preparation programs. They are run by different providers universities, community colleges, school districts, for-profit companies and their standards vary.

Until now, the state has based accreditation on just one factor: the performance of teachers-to-be on the state's written certification exam.

In the new rating system, the percentage of teacher-candidates who must pass the certification exam will grow gradually from 70 percent this year to 80 percent for the 2011-12 academic year.

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