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States Fail NCLB Test According to New Education Trust Report

A new Education Trust analysis of teacher-equity plans prepared by all 50 states and the District of Columbia finds that almsot all states failed to properly analyze data that would determine whether poor students and students of color get more than their fair share of unqualified, inexperienced, and out-of-field teachers.

A new Education Trust analysis of teacher-equity plans prepared by all 50 states and the District of Columbia finds that almsot all states failed to properly analyze data that would determine whether poor students and students of color get more than their fair share of unqualified, inexperienced, and out-of-field teachers.

 

"Research is clear that teachers make the difference in how much students learn, said Heather Peske, the Education Trust senior associate who directed the analysis. "We can't close achievement gaps without confronting the gaps in access to teacher quality for low-income and minority students."

 

The No Child Left Behind Act not only requires states to guarantee that 100 percent of core academic classes are taught by "highly qualified" teachers, but also to "ensure that poor and minority children are not taught at higher rates than other children by inexperienced, unqualified or out of field teachers."

 

After years of ignoring this provision of the law, the U.S. Department of Education required that state leaders submit data on the distribution of teachers by July 7 -- along with their plans to fix it.

 

Almost all states missed the mark.

 

To comply with the law, each state had to look at inequality in four areas:

 

  • Whether low-income students are more likely than other students to be assigned to unqualified or out-of-field teachers in core academic courses;

  • Whether minority students are more likely than other students to be assigned to unqualified or out-of-field teachers in core academic courses;

  • Whether low-income students are more likely than other students to be taught by inexperienced teachers;

  • Whether minority students are more likely than other students to be taught by inexperienced teachers.

Unfortutately, the majority of states did not look at all four areas of inequality. Only three states - Ohio, Nevada, and Tennessee -- examined all four components. New York also offered some analysis of the four measures. 

 

But most states simply didn't comply with the law -- and had little guidance from the U.S. Department of Education to help them do so.

 

Of the plans submitted, 34 states only focused on one area of the equity analysis -- the percentage of classes taught by highly qualified teachers in high-poverty schools compared to low-poverty schools. Only 10 states appropriately analyzed whether minority students were taught disproportionately by teachers who were not highly qualified. Only four states examined whether students from low-income families were taught by inexperienced teachers, and only three looked whether minority students were taught disproportionately by inexperienced teachers.

 

More than half of the states (27) asserted that by simply meeting the highly qualified teacher (HQT) requirements of NCLB, they would also meet the teacher-equity requirements. This is insufficient because it ignores inequality in whether poor and minority students are more likely to be assigned to inexperienced teachers.

 

The full Education Trust report, Missing the Mark, is available at: http://www2.edtrust.org/NR/rdonlyres/5E2815C9-F765-4821-828F-66F4D156713A/0/TeacherEquityPlans.pdf

Published Monday, Aug. 28, 2006

States Fail NCLB Test According to New Education Trust Report

A new Education Trust analysis of teacher-equity plans prepared by all 50 states and the District of Columbia finds that almsot all states failed to properly analyze data that would determine whether poor students and students of color get more than their fair share of unqualified, inexperienced, and out-of-field teachers.

 

"Research is clear that teachers make the difference in how much students learn, said Heather Peske, the Education Trust senior associate who directed the analysis. "We can't close achievement gaps without confronting the gaps in access to teacher quality for low-income and minority students."

 

The No Child Left Behind Act not only requires states to guarantee that 100 percent of core academic classes are taught by "highly qualified" teachers, but also to "ensure that poor and minority children are not taught at higher rates than other children by inexperienced, unqualified or out of field teachers."

 

After years of ignoring this provision of the law, the U.S. Department of Education required that state leaders submit data on the distribution of teachers by July 7 -- along with their plans to fix it.

 

Almost all states missed the mark.

 

To comply with the law, each state had to look at inequality in four areas:

 

  • Whether low-income students are more likely than other students to be assigned to unqualified or out-of-field teachers in core academic courses;

  • Whether minority students are more likely than other students to be assigned to unqualified or out-of-field teachers in core academic courses;

  • Whether low-income students are more likely than other students to be taught by inexperienced teachers;

  • Whether minority students are more likely than other students to be taught by inexperienced teachers.

Unfortutately, the majority of states did not look at all four areas of inequality. Only three states - Ohio, Nevada, and Tennessee -- examined all four components. New York also offered some analysis of the four measures. 

 

But most states simply didn't comply with the law -- and had little guidance from the U.S. Department of Education to help them do so.

 

Of the plans submitted, 34 states only focused on one area of the equity analysis -- the percentage of classes taught by highly qualified teachers in high-poverty schools compared to low-poverty schools. Only 10 states appropriately analyzed whether minority students were taught disproportionately by teachers who were not highly qualified. Only four states examined whether students from low-income families were taught by inexperienced teachers, and only three looked whether minority students were taught disproportionately by inexperienced teachers.

 

More than half of the states (27) asserted that by simply meeting the highly qualified teacher (HQT) requirements of NCLB, they would also meet the teacher-equity requirements. This is insufficient because it ignores inequality in whether poor and minority students are more likely to be assigned to inexperienced teachers.

 

The full Education Trust report, Missing the Mark, is available at: http://www2.edtrust.org/NR/rdonlyres/5E2815C9-F765-4821-828F-66F4D156713A/0/TeacherEquityPlans.pdf

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