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ASSOCIATION FOR CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION

CTE Policy Watch

Alternatively Certified Teachers Effective, But Need Feedback

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March 22, 2013

By: Anthony Mitchell, ACTE intern

With debate ongoing as to the effectiveness of CTE teachers who come to teaching from practicing their area of expertise in business and industry, also known as alternative certification, a study on the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) induction model for alternatively certified teachers recently released by the National Research Center for Career and Technical Education (NRCCTE) intends to shed light on the issue.

In partnership with the NRCCTE, SREB has been testing an induction model for new CTE teachers entering the profession through alternative certification. The model aims to improve these new teachers' ability to design and deliver engaging, rigorous and standards-focused instruction. It includes a 10-day summer institute prior to the first year of teaching, followed up by three two-day workshops during the first year and a second summer institute at the end of the first year.  The model also includes coaching from a professional development instructor, on-site mentorship and an electronic community of practice for sharing questions and feedback.

Using results from field tests of this model, the researchers find that a CTE teacher from an industry profession is able to adapt faster and more successfully if he or she relates the material back to his or her former job. While teachers who come directly from another profession will feel confident in their mastery of the material, according to the study, they will likely struggle to relay the information to students.

In addition, findings indicate that alternatively-certified teachers will likely need frequent feedback on their work and ways to manage the classroom effectively. The findings also suggest that each teacher be given a basic literacy and mathematics examination to judge their ability. Additionally, each new CTE teacher should participate in a professional development program to acclimate themselves to the teaching environment.

Despite added steps before an alternatively-certified teacher is ready to enter the classroom, the study cites a report from Mathematica Policy Research, which finds that there is no difference in student math and reading performance between a traditionally-certified teacher and one who entered from a different profession.

Anthony Mitchell is an intern at ACTE and attends Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania, where he studies Communications with an emphasis in journalism.

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Administration’s Budget Proposal Restores Sequester Cut to CTE Funding but Still Falls Short of Need

Earlier today, the Obama Administration released its budget proposal for FY 2014. This document, normally released in February but delayed due to the other fiscal issues in play this spring, outlines the Administration's spending priorities for the coming year.

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8/12/13 By: Mitch Following the release of President Obama’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 budget request on Wednesday, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan appeared before the House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee to defend the Administration’s plan for funding education in the coming fiscal year. In the budget proposal, the Administration suggests funding Perkins at 1.1 billion, equal to FY 2012 levels, before sequestration. Additionally, the budget proposes a $10 million increase for the National Programs line item which is designated for a new dual enrollment program focused on career preparation. Despite requests for an overall increase in education funding, the Administration's budget does not prioritize additional investments to meet the growing needs in CTE. During the hearing on Thursday, both Republican and Democratic members of the Labor-HHS-Education appropriations subcommittee expressed apprehensions about the Administration’s strong focus on increasing funding for competitive grant programs. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), ranking-member of the subcommittee, talked about her concern for formula-funded education programs, like Perkins, which largely did not receive increases in funding. “The emphasis on competitive funding I find troubling,” said DeLauro. “What is need is steady secure funding for all of our schools to move toward improvement.” Federal investments in education must be directed to those areas with a proven track record of success that provide all students with equal access and opportunity. Members of the subcommittee will now begin to draft an appropriations bill that will fund Perkins in FY 2014. Let Congress know that it is time to make investing in Perkins a priority!

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