Actions Over Credentials: Moving from Highly Qualified to Measurably Effective
by Joshua Barnett & Audrey Amrein-Beardsley - August 18, 2011
For decades, policymakers have promulgated legislation that requires schools to hire effective teachers in all classrooms. Simultaneously, the education research community has attempted to define what effective teachers do in the classroom. A decade ago, No Child Left Behind provided a framework for defining effective teachers as “highly qualified,” which required schools to ensure all of their teachers fit the new standard. This standard, however, is no longer appropriate, as continued evidence indicates that the relationship between credentials and achievement is tenuous. Therefore, policymakers and researchers need to revise the term “highly qualified,” and, by utilizing the advances in educational accountability over the previous decade, replace it with a term grounded in practice and directly connected to achievement and effectiveness.
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