Georgia and the Highly Qualified Teacher Challenge

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Our guess is that as soon as states begin to report the percentage of their teachers who are highly qualified, we ll see wild discrepancies. Since the federal law has left it up to states to decide what being highly qualified means, every state will produce a different definition with different results. (Such discrepancies are certainly cropping up in the state reports on how many schools met adequate yearly progress.)

Georgia has announced that 94% of its teachers are highly qualified, defined in Georgia as a teacher who is certified and not teaching out-of-field. This pretty good news didn t stop the president of the Georgia Association of Educators from a bit of grumbling. She doesn t think that the state is going to be able to find or retrain the six percent who aren t qualified over the next two years, because they are largely located in rural school districts. "What are these schools going to do? People aren't going to move there." said Merchuria Chase Williams, GAE president.