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Programs to Certify Teachers May Grow

The State Board of Regents will consider letting alternative teacher training programs certify teachers, expanding the role that for decades has been exclusively performed by education schools. The possible expansion of certification would further redefine the traditional path to becoming a teacher in the state.

But critics have often accused education schools of not doing enough to prepare graduates for the classroom. In a speech at Teachers College at Columbia University last month, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said that schools should focus more on hands-on classroom work, similar to medical residencies that aspiring doctors must complete.

William J. Baldwin, the vice provost at Teachers College, said that in expanding the certification process, the state would be treating teaching as something to be trained for, rather than a sophisticated profession.

“I could identify critical shortages in health care, such as primary care physicians, and I don’t think people would be open to allowing certifying doctors that came from an alternate path,” he said. “I think they are responding to the right concerns, but I am not sure this is the right solution.”

The article “Programs to Certify Teachers May Grow” was published on Novemeber 16th, 2009 in the New York Times.


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