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Scholar Academies, with permission from Philadelphia School Partnership

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Peering Around the Corner / No Guarantees

Chad Aldeman and Ashley LiBetti Mitchel

Schools increasingly rely on new teachers to staff their classrooms. A generation ago, the modal teacher had 15 years teaching experience, meaning that, if you asked teachers how many years they had taught the most likely answer would be 15. Today, the answer would be five years of experience. And the proportion of teachers who are new to the field will increase as the Baby Boom generation retires: Some estimates forecast half the nation’s teachers could retire in the next ten years.

This demand for new teachers creates some obvious challenges for the education field, but it also means that states have a unique opportunity to leverage their authority over teacher preparation and certification to raise the overall level of teacher quality and effectiveness.

To that end, Bellwether has produced two new reports:

* Peering Around the Corner, analyzes 11 states that have made substantial progress in linking teachers to the preparation programs that prepared them. For each state, we review the technical and practical decisions they made — like determining which outcomes to measure and how to define them, identifying the right sample size, and deciding if and how to use the data for accountability. We also take a more general look at the challenges states can expect to face, and the tradeoffs they’ll have to make, as they take on this work.

* Policymakers are still looking for the right way to identify effective teacher preparation and predict who will be an effective teacher. Nothing tried so far can guarantee effective teachers. In No Guarantees, we recommend an alternative approach that relies on the best available evidence to date: initial teaching effectiveness has promise for predicting future effectiveness.

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Blog Post

Write About Education? Join Us For Better Blogging!

Do you write about education? Want to shape education debates? Would you like your organization’s blog to reach new audiences? Apply for Better Blogging, Bellwether’s free new media training held July 5-6 in Washington, D.C.

Blog Post

2016 FAFSA Completion Rates By State

(Note: This post is an updated version of my 2015 piece on the same topic. The data are new for 2016.) Tomorrow is College Signing Day, a day to celebrate students and their commitment to complete their education beyond high school. In anticipation of the day’s events, I pulled the latest state-level data on Free Application for Federal Student Aid […]

Opportunity
Alliance College-Ready Public Schools

Alliance is the largest nonprofit charter organization in Los Angeles, providing access for nearly 12,000 low-income students.

The incoming Chief Talent Officer will be responsible for the critically important work of shaping the vision and providing strategic leadership for Alliance’s talent management initiatives, ultimately owning the stewardship of Alliance’s staff of approximately 1200 educators, leaders, and professionals through the entire talent lifecycle.