Board of Education OKs New Teaching License

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The State Board of Education has adopted new rules for licensing teachers, staff members and administrators. The guidelines include a two-year, renewable Career Specialist Permit, which paves the way for professionals with a bachelor's degree to teach high school. The board also established additional rules for the A-F accountability system. You can view a list of answers to frequently asked questions about licensing guidelines, called the Rules for Education Preparation and Accountability, by clicking here.

September 3, 2014

News Release

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - The State Board of Education (SBOE) adopted final Rules for Education Preparation and Accountability (REPA III) in regards to school leadership, teacher and staff licensure and discussed A-F accountability topics at its monthly business meeting today in Fort Wayne.

The SBOE's first action was enlisting the Indiana Department of Education to review and recommend a new lead partner for Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) at Broad Ripple and John Marshall high schools. The previous partner, TNTP, abruptly withdrew as IPS's lead partner citing irreconcilable differences in regards to IPS's view on TNTP's role and scope of work as the lead partner. The SBOE originally selected TNTP as the lead partner at the recommendation of IPS.

The Board then voted 7-3 to adopt final rules for REPA III, which establish how K-12 teachers, staff and administrators obtain licenses or permits. REPA III also creates the Career Specialist Permit, which is a two-year renewable license for secondary level teachers.

"This permit provides experienced professionals with a gateway into the teaching profession," said Dr. David Freitas, District 2 SBOE representative. "It empowers school boards and principles to make local hiring decisions that best fit their schools’ needs."

It requires an applicant to have a Bachelor’s degree with at least a 3.0 GPA in a content area related to the subject the applicant intends to teach, pass the content area licensure assessment, complete pedagogy requirements beginning in the first month of teaching, and have 6,000 hours of work experience in the last five years in a field that is related to the licensure area.

Andrea Neal, District 6 SBOE representative, provided an example of how the permit can be applied. She referenced a senior executive with extensive experience in Latin America who would now be able to enter the teaching profession as a Spanish instructor.

The SBOE also addressed several matters dealing with A-F accountability, including unanimously moving to change Flanner House's accountability grade from A to "no grade" based upon proof of widespread cheating on ISTEP testing. Additionally, the Board approved appeals criteria and the review process for A-F accountability grades. It also provided the IDOE with guidance on how to manage the A-F review process for schools with atypical grade configurations and gave these schools an opportunity to present an appeal in regards to what model should be used to determine their school's final A-F grade. There are only seven schools in the State of Indiana considered to have an atypical grade configuration.

In other business, the SBOE voted 10-1 that when existing Board meeting procedures cannot be applied to a particular circumstance, the Board shall default to Robert's Rules of Order. They also unanimously selected Dr. Freitas as the voting delegate for the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE) and approved the Nonfinal Order of Dismissal relating to Edison Learning's Request for a Determination of Noncompliance against the Gary Community School Corporation.

Finally, the Board heard from Claire Fiddian-Green, Special Assistant to the Governor for Education Innovation, and supported her recommendation for a special meeting of the A-F Panel with the SBOE later this month. This will allow sufficient time for the Board to engage with the Panel and provide policy guidance to IDOE regarding modifications to the existing A-F accountability system. These changes are required under HEA 1427, which was enacted in 2013.

The SBOE's next meeting has been moved from October 1st to October 15th in Indianapolis with live streaming and the agenda posted at http://www.in.gov/sboe/.

Source: Center for Education & Career Innovation