2011 Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should base licensure advancement on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
Arkansas' requirements for licensure advancement and renewal are not based on evidence of teacher effectiveness.
In Arkansas, to advance from an Initial license to a Standard license, teachers are required to complete the state's induction and mentoring program and pass the Praxis III performance-based assessment. Arkansas does not require evidence of effectiveness to be factored into the renewal of a professional license. Arkansas only requires that teachers complete 60 hours of professional development as a condition for renewal. Licenses must be renewed every five years.
Require evidence of effectiveness as a part of teacher licensing policy.
Although requiring the Praxis III may be a step in the right direction, the state should consider additional requirements that base professional licensure on objective evidence of teacher effectiveness. Published data from Ohio, the only other state to require wide use of the Praxis III, show a pass rate of nearly 100 percent, calling into serious question its use as a performance indicator. Evidence of effectiveness should also be a factor in decisions about license renewal.
Discontinue license renewal requirements with no direct connection to classroom effectiveness.
While targeted requirements may potentially expand teacher knowledge and improve teacher practice, Arkansas' unspecified coursework requirements for license renewal merely call for teachers to complete a certain amount of seat time. These requirements do not correlate with teacher effectiveness.
Arkansas recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.