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"Highly-Qualified" Mathematics Teachers?

On December 11, 2007, the American Institutes for Research released a report Teacher Quality Research in 2007 specific to the NCLB context. Restricting itself to research reports released in 2007, the report issued some "major findings":

  1. Most teachers are "highly-qualified" under NCLB--but that doesn't mean that all students now have access to a great teacher.
  2. State policies definign what it means to be a "highly qualified" teacher vary greatly--so a teacher who is "highly qualified" in one state might not be "highly qualified" in another.
  3. Some teacher credentials are associated with improved math achivement results, but the effects are considerably smaller for reading achievement.
  4. Teachers tend to "hit their stride" around five years of teaching experience.
  5. Whatever the yardstick we use to measure good teachers, it seems clear that we don't have enough of them in mathematics, science, and special education.
  6. High poverty schools face systematics challenges in recruiting and retaining highly qualified teachers and principals.
  7. State and local policymakers should consider incentives and alternatives to traditional single-salary schedules fort teachers.
  8. Districts can improve teacher quality, in part, by improving hiring practices, which can be lengthy, bureaucratic, and based on limited information.
  9. Support from and collaboration with other adults--both principals and teacher colleagues--is critical for attracting and keeping teachers in high-need schools.
So, did you learn anything new from this report? Sometimes it is nice to see that research supports what you "know"!