By now you've heard that NCTQ is reviewing teacher preparation programs in partnership with US News & World Report. The goal is plain and simple: Building better teachers. Future teachers, district superintendents and policymakers need to know which institutions are graduating teachers who are 'student ready'--and which are not.
We've put in requests to institutions for documents we need to conduct our evaluation of ed schools. None of the documents that we are seeking is confidential, but taken together they do tell us what institutions expect their teacher candidates to know and be able to do in order to graduate as licensed teachers. Our requests comprise the "basic stuff" involved in delivering a program of study: the syllabi describing the content of required courses, the textbooks that students must buy and use, student teaching handbooks, and any data that institutions collect on their graduates' performance.
Unfortunately, a number of education schools have decided against providing us with this basic information. From our perspective, higher education institutions, whether private or public, have an obligation to be transparent about the design and operations of their teacher preparation programs. After all, these institutions have been publicly approved to prepare public school teachers.
So today we are launching Transparency Central 2.0. At this website, you can track our progress in bringing transparency to teacher prep state by state, institution by institution--seeing first hand how well schools are responding to our invitation to be fully transparent and open to the public. Check it out and tell us what you think.