Cover

Table of Contents

Cover

About Learning Point Associates

Copyright page

Figures and Rubrics

The Authors

Introduction

CHAPTER ONE Teachers and Leaders in Schools

The Conditions That Support Effective Teachers and Leaders

OVERVIEW

CREATE A POSITIVE, COLLABORATIVE, AND TEAM-ORIENTED SCHOOL CULTURE THAT FACILITATES EFFECTIVE TEACHING

ENGAGE FAMILIES AND THE COMMUNITY IN A MEANINGFUL AND GENUINE WAY

ENSURE THAT TEACHER WORKLOADS ARE REASONABLE

ENSURE THAT SCHOOLS ARE SAFE, CLEAN, AND APPROPRIATELY EQUIPPED FOR EFFECTIVE TEACHING

CHAPTER TWO Getting the Right People on the Bus

How School Districts Manage Teacher Recruitment, Hiring, and Placement

OVERVIEW

HIRE THE BEST POSSIBLE CANDIDATES

DISTRIBUTE TEACHERS APPROPRIATELY AND EQUITABLY ACROSS SCHOOLS AND CLASSROOMS

IF THE POOL OF EXCELLENT APPLICANTS IS TOO SHALLOW, WORK TO WIDEN THE POOL

IF OUTSTANDING APPLICANTS ARE NOT ACCEPTING YOUR OFFERS, REVIEW YOUR EDUCATOR TALENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

TEACHER RECRUITMENT CHECKLISTS

CHAPTER THREE The Enduring Role of Unions

Teacher Performance Management

OVERVIEW

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO MEASURE?

HOW DO YOU WANT TO MEASURE TEACHER EFFECTIVENESS?

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH THIS INFORMATION?

IMPLICATIONS FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

IMPLICATIONS FOR STAFFING

IMPLICATIONS FOR COMPENSATION

PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER

CHAPTER FOUR The View from the Statehouse

Enabling Teachers, Building the Profession

OVERVIEW

THE ROLE OF FEDERAL TEACHER QUALITY POLICY

BUILDING THE PROFESSION: STRONG INDUCTION AND MENTORING PROGRAMS

HIGH-QUALITY PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT: ENABLING TEACHERS

MAKING CONNECTIONS TO INDUCTION, MENTORING, AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT ACROSS THE CAREER CONTINUUM

CHAPTER FIVE Setting the Table

The Role of Institutions of Higher Education in Preparing Teachers for Success

OVERVIEW

SERVE AS A GATEWAY TO THE PROFESSION

PREPARE CANDIDATES TO BE EFFECTIVE IN THE CLASSROOM

FROM HIGHER EDUCATION TO YOUR SCHOOL: GETTING THE BALL ROLLING

Conclusion

Managing Educator Talent for Gen Y Teachers and Beyond

CONDITIONS THAT SUPPORT EFFECTIVE TEACHERS AND LEADERS

TEACHER RECRUITMENT, HIRING, AND PLACEMENT

TEACHER PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT

ENABLING TEACHERS, BUILDING THE PROFESSION

THE ROLE OF INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION IN PREPARING TEACHERS FOR SUCCESS

Index

Improving Teacher Quality

About Learning Point Associates

Learning Point Associates, a nonprofit education research and consulting organization, combines nationally recognized expertise in educator quality with twenty-five years of experience in research, evaluation, and direct practice to find solutions to the most pressing problems in education today, including educator quality, shortages, and attrition. The organization’s reputation is built on a solid foundation of designing and conducting rigorous and relevant education research and evaluations; developing and delivering tools, services, and resources to states, districts, and schools; and analyzing and synthesizing education policy trends and practices. Learning Point Associates merged with AIR on August 1, 2010. For more information, visit www.learningpt.org.

Title page

Figures and Rubrics

Figure I.1. Educator Talent Management Components

Figure I.2. Educator Talent Management Intercomponent Connection

Rubric 1.1. Is Your Plan for Providing Positive Working Conditions for Teachers Connected to and Complemented by the Other Key Educator Talent Management Areas

Rubric 2.1. Is Your Plan for Recruiting and Hiring Effective Teachers Connected to and Complemented by the Other Key Educator Talent Management Areas

Rubric 3.1. Is Your Plan for Performance Management Connected to and Complemented by the Other Key Educator Talent Management Areas

Rubric 4.1. Is Your Plan for Securing Effective Teachers Through Induction and Ongoing Professional Development Connected to and Complemented by the Other Key Educator Talent Management Areas

Rubric 5.1. Is Your Teacher Preparation Program Connected to and Complemented by the Other Key Educator Talent Management Functions

Rubric C.1. Is Your Plan for Managing Educator Talent in Line with the Needs of the Next Generation

The Authors

Sabrina W. M. Laine, PhD, is chief program officer for educator quality at Learning Point Associates. She manages the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality funded by the U.S. Department of Education and is a principal investigator for the Center for Educator Compensation Reform. Laine has a diverse background in educational policy research and has spearheaded efforts to contribute to policy research and resource development related to every aspect of managing and supporting educator talent, including recruitment, compensation, evaluation, distribution, and professional development. She leads a team of more than fifteen researchers and policy analysts who are focused on the challenges faced by educators in urban, rural, and low-performing schools. She has worked for the last several years to ensure that policies and programs are in place that enable all children to gain access to highly qualified teachers and leaders. Laine earned her doctorate in educational leadership and policy studies from Indiana University.

Ellen J. Behrstock-Sherratt, PhD, is a policy associate at Learning Point Associates. Her area of focus is teacher quality and school leadership. Behrstock led the development of the Managing Educator Talent (METworksSM) Framework, allowing districts and states to identify gaps between their current practices for managing educator talent and the elements of effective practice identified in the research. She has authored or coauthored articles and briefs on topics such as strategies for supporting Generation Y teachers, teachers’ use of educational research, innovations in state-level teacher quality policies, teacher compensation, and teacher and administrator induction. Behrstock-Sherratt also presented and facilitated discussions at National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality conferences and issue forums and has provided technical assistance to a collaborative of New England states relating to defining and measuring educator effectiveness. Behrstock-Sherratt earned her doctoral degree in education from the University of Oxford.

Molly S. Lasagna is a policy associate at Learning Point Associates. Her work in educator quality focuses on conducting high-quality research and evaluations and disseminating the results through multiple media to diverse audiences in the public education sector. She contributes to initiatives of the Center for Educator Compensation Reform and the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality. Previously, Lasagna worked at the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, where she was a program associate for Pathways to Higher Learning. She also taught middle school language arts in Richmond, Virginia, for three years. Lasagna earned a master’s degree in secondary English education from the University of Virginia and a master’s degree in urban education policy from Brown University.

Introduction

It’s the first day of school, but amidst the excitement is the uncomfortable knowledge that, yet again, some students will be deprived of excellent teachers this year. You feel you did everything within your power to deliver the teaching talent students need. Nevertheless, despite your efforts to convince them otherwise, several of the best teachers are leaving while the handful of teachers who seem consistently unable to get through to their students have no plans to improve their practice or move on. Meanwhile, well-intentioned parents are pulling you in one direction, legal and district requirements in another, and your conscience is telling you that the one solution that will let you sleep at night is to recruit, retain, and develop enough highly effective teachers for each and every student. But how do you do it?

Some things never change. A sixteenth-century English knight by the name of Sir Thomas Elyot wrote: “The chief cause, why in our time noble men be not as excellent in learning, as they were in old time among the Romans and Greeks [is] … the lack or fewness of sufficient masters or teachers” (Elyot, 1557, p. 36).

Twenty-first-century education in the United States has advanced considerably since medieval times, but the concern about the number and quality of teachers persists. Although some researchers and education leaders argue that these worries are the mere grumblings of alarmists and that in fact there are more teachers seeking jobs than classrooms needing teachers, other stakeholders remain convinced that shortfalls of sufficiently high-quality teachers are leading to inequities and poor outcomes in the education and life opportunities of many children (Akiba, LeTendre, & Scribner, 2007; Antonucci, 2009; Darling-Hammond, 2006).

There is consensus among researchers and education leaders at every level of the education system that teachers are the most important school-level factor affecting student achievement. In addition to the obvious role of teachers in improving children’s academic growth, other societal concerns—from crime to health to economic competitiveness to democracy itself—are affected by the formal and informal learning that takes place in schools.

For this reason, concerned individuals and organizations across many stakeholder groups have felt compelled to take action to attract and retain teachers who are highly competent, caring, and committed to student success. Unfortunately, such teachers still are not available for all students or for all subjects. Poor and minority children, in particular, are systematically taught by teachers with less experience and fewer credentials (Imazeki & Goe, 2009).

This book discusses research and concrete practices that education leaders can use to improve teacher quality by focusing on teacher recruitment and retention. As the role of school principal has evolved from one of manager to instructional leader, the importance of teacher recruitment, retention, and development has become a more central priority among the many responsibilities of principals. What the principal does or does not do has become a key influence on teachers’ levels of satisfaction with their choice of profession or school and their effectiveness in promoting student learning. At the same time, though, the principal cannot be solely responsible for creating the types of practices and conditions that teachers need. The support of school districts, unions, institutions of higher education, state departments of education and state policymakers is equally important.

In this book, we present strategies and promising practices spanning various policy areas that influence the overall quality of teachers and each of the key groups with a stake in education reform. Whereas most other books on this topic focus on one educator policy area (for example, preparation or professional development) and address a more limited audience, this book places the principal at the heart of teacher recruitment and retention, yet aims to be relevant to all concerned parties. So whether you are from a state education agency, a school district office, a university, a union or advocacy group, or any number of other groups concerned with teacher quality, you will gain insights on how to shape policies that will secure the teaching talent that principals need to deliver a high-quality education for all students. If you are a school principal, this book will shed light both on what you can do in your school to improve teacher quality and on how you can work with the wider educational community to facilitate the types of reforms and supports that are needed to ensure that all of your students are taught by effective teachers.

This approach is adopted because no one stakeholder group can realize lasting change on its own. Likewise, reform initiatives focusing on just one type of strategy cannot create the workplace conditions needed to truly build capacity within the education profession. Rather, collaboration and common understanding and purpose are needed among all stakeholders, and their priorities must include progress along a number of critical avenues that may crucially affect children’s access to high-quality teachers.

A SYSTEMIC APPROACH TO HUMAN CAPITAL MANAGEMENT

A systemic approach to human capital management—or educator talent-management, as we refer to it in this book—addresses the entire continuum of teacher policies and practices, as well as the relevant stakeholder groups with a stake in ensuring a highly effective teaching faculty. A systemic approach ensures that all of the pieces and all of the players are strategically aligned and not working at cross-purposes. In looking at the “system” for attracting and retaining teachers, our intention is to offer greater perspective, greater ownership of change, and greater access to innovative ideas and best practice to individuals whose jobs typically allow them to see only certain aspects of teacher quality reforms. The “systemic” approach is meant to better equip education leaders to influence the broader realm of teacher quality reforms.

Current practice in education often treats the securing of “human capital” talent in a passive manner (Maxwell, 2008). In The State of Education Policy Research, Odden, Milanowski, and Heneman (2007) note that “although strategic human resource management has been emphasized in other sectors, in the field of education its potential to improve teacher quality has received little attention” (p. 340). Lynn Olson (2008), then executive editor of Education Week, stated that in practice in education there is “no system for attracting, training, and supporting the best people for the job.”

Compared to other sectors, education lags behind. Where other industries refer to a “war for talent” (MacMillan, 2008), the education field is far more subdued in its campaign for more high-quality teachers and its actions to meet this goal. A joint study by IBM Corporation and the Human Capital Institute found that although attention to human capital practices varied substantially across industries, the education field was found to be the least likely to engage in “enlightened talent management practices” (Ringo, Schweyer, DeMarco, Jones, & Lesser, 2008, p. 9).

Education and government lag behind all these industries: banking, retail, financial markets, health care, telecommunications, professional services, industrial products, electronics or technology, and consumer products. It is interesting to note that the industries that engage in the most human capital activities (for example, electronics or technology and professional services) are referred to as the “knowledge-intensive industries,” while education is not (Ringo et al., 2008, p. 4).

Teacher recruitment and retention have been policy concerns for many years. The comprehensive and strategic approach to educator talent management initiatives has only recently begun to gain momentum. Recent changes and initiatives within education are currently underway to improve the management of educator talent. For example, the creation of human capital or talent management directorship positions and initiatives in many of the United States’ largest school districts reflects recognition of the need for more oversight of the relevant policies and practices for securing a sufficient number of high-quality teachers. These individuals are charged with securing the highest quality teaching force possible by working full-time to oversee the various policies that aim to attract top talent to the district. They break down silos within the district and help stakeholders take a “bird’s-eye” view of reform efforts underway, rather than getting stuck in the “worm’s-eye” perspective of daily crises. Smaller districts also are concerned with creating the appropriate mix of incentives to maintain a strong teaching force for their students.

In addition, the Strategic Management of Human Capital (SMHC) initiative at the Consortium for Policy Research in Education embarked on an effort to dramatically improve student achievement by strategically improving teacher and administrator recruitment, retention, and development. The initiative focused on the one hundred largest urban districts in the United States and resulted in a series of case studies and a national reform network (Center for Policy Research in Education, n.d.). Learning Point Associates, a nonprofit education consulting organization with a longstanding focus on educator quality, is another national educational organization that systematically has summarized the findings of the large body of literature on teacher and school leader policies in its Managing Educator Talent (METworksSM) Framework (Behrstock, Meyer, Wraight, & Bhatt, 2009). The organization has developed a variety of tools, including a state policy inventory and district assessment, to assist education leaders in taking a more comprehensive and deliberate approach to securing enough teachers and school leaders.

This systemic approach to improving teacher quality is in contrast to the more piecemeal, silver-bullet approach that often is seen in education. Some education leaders are convinced that higher pay is the key to a stronger profession; others maintain that stronger preparation programs, alternative routes, high-quality induction, or ongoing professional development represent the missing bridge between where the profession is and where it needs to be. Because teachers affect what is most important to a large majority of members of society—their children—opinions on the appropriate means of improving teaching are both strong and widespread across society.

It appears, then, that teacher quality may remain at the forefront of ongoing national policy conversations not because education leaders have been unable to pinpoint a solution, but because they have identified too many uncoordinated solutions, each with the most passionate of advocates backing it as the most important solution. The result is a confused and incoherent policy agenda, along with conflict at the expense of collaboration in moving teacher quality policies; hence the quality of education that children receive suffers. In this book we aim to represent in a comprehensive yet digestible fashion the crucial policy levers that should be tapped in order to better recruit and retain high-quality teachers for all students and the roles of different groups in promoting change.

ABOUT THE METWORKSSM FRAMEWORK

The components of educator quality policy addressed here are based on the Managing Educator Talent (METworksSM) Framework developed by Learning Point Associates. They include the following eight components, which span the teacher career continuum (these same components apply to principals and other school leaders, but this book primarily focuses on the management of teacher talent):

These components are illustrated in Figure I.1.

Figure I.1. Educator Talent Management Components

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Each of these components is necessary, though insufficient on its own, for authentic improvements to teacher recruitment and retention. Each component also must be understood in relation to the others. For example, preparation should transition seamlessly to a comprehensive induction program, which should be aligned with ongoing professional development throughout an educator’s career. Professional development must be directly responsive to the performance management system, such that educators’ evaluations lead to genuine growth and improvements in effectiveness when it comes to enhancing student learning. At the same time, compensation and other incentives should be linked in some manner to a teacher’s development as a professional. These interconnections are shown in Figure I.2.

Figure I.2. Educator Talent Management Intercomponent Connections

cintrof002

Recognizing the connections between the eight key components serves several purposes. Most important, this recognition increases the effectiveness of policy implementation by creating coherence and consistency in the goals of each and in the strategies developed to achieve them. In addition, taking into account these interconnections creates efficiencies. Financial and other resources can be leveraged to avoid overlap in effort and to divide costs among resources set aside to achieve common purposes.

The systemic approach described in this book not only recognizes the various relevant teacher-quality policy components but also accommodates the critical responsibilities of states and other organizations in what traditionally has been a locally controlled issue. The increasingly high-stakes nature of education reform combined with the complex machinery of governance requires the coordination of state education agencies, local school districts, teachers’ unions, institutions of higher education, legislatures, and governors.

Educational Researcher

Antonucci, M. (2009, December 18). The Yogi Berra logic of California’s “teacher shortage.” Educationnews.org. Retrieved January 22, 2010, from http://www.educationnews.org/blogs/10999.html.

Behrstock, E., Meyer, C., Wraight, S., & Bhatt, M. (2009). Managing educator talent: A research-based framework for district and state policymakers (Version 2.1). Naperville, IL: Learning Point Associates.

Center for Policy Research in Education (n.d.). Strategic Management of Human Capital. Retrieved March 9, 2009, from http://www.smhc-cpre.org.

Darling-Hammond, L. (2006). Securing the right to learn: Policy and practice for powerful teaching and learning. Educational Researcher 35(7), 13–24.

Elyot, T. (1557). The boke named the governour. London: Octavius Graham Gilchrist.

Imazeki, J., & Goe, L. (2009). The distribution of highly qualified, experienced teachers: Challenges and opportunities. Washington, DC: National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality. Retrieved December 1, 2009, from http://www.tqsource.org/publications/August2009Brief.pdf.

MacMillan, D. (2008, August 13). Talent management: How to invest in your workforce. BusinessWeek. Retrieved February 5, 2009, from http://www.businessweek.com/managing/content/aug2008/ca20080813_954038.htm.

Maxwell, L. A. (2008, December 1). Human capital key worry for reformers. Education Week, 28(14), 1, 13. Retrieved February 6, 2009, from http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2008/12/03/14human_ep.h28.html?tmp=1540450504.

Odden, A. R., Milanowski, A., & Heneman, H. G. (2007). Policy and professionals: Commentary. In S. H. Fuhrman, D. K. Cohen, & F. Mosher (Eds.), The State of Education Policy Research (pp. 337–348). New York: Routledge.

Olson, L. (2008). Human resources a weak spot. Education Week. January 10, 2008. Retrieved November 4, 2008, from http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2008/01/10/18overview.h27.html?print=1.

Ringo, T., Schweyer, A., DeMarco, M., Jones, R., & Lesser, E. (2008). Integrated talent management. Part 3—Turning talent management into a competitive advantage: An industry view. Somers, NY: IBM Corporation. Retrieved February 6, 2009, from http://www.humancapitalinstitute.org/hci/IBM_2008_Part3.dbprop.