Teacher Preparation Policy
The state should collect and publicly report key data on the quality of teacher preparation programs. This goal was reorganized in 2021.
Student Growth Data: California does not collect or publicly report data that connect student growth to teacher preparation programs.
Licensure Exam Pass Rates: California publishes final pass rates of all test takers for content tests at the institutional and state level. These data are presented in three examinee groups: "all program completers," "all enrolled students who have completed all nonclinical courses," and "other enrolled candidates." The state also publishes an annual report on state-level pass rate data by test. This report includes first-time pass rate data for the CBEST and RICA tests. First-time pass rate data are not published for the CSET: Multiple Subjects or Single Subject tests.
Commission on Teacher Credentialing Reports by Institution https://www.ctc.ca.gov/commission/reports/data/reports-by-institution Annual Report on Passing Rates of Commission-Approved Examinations from 2012-2013 to 2016-2017 https://www.ctc.ca.gov/docs/default-source/commission/reports/exam-passing-rate-fy-2012-13-to-2016-17.pdf?sfvrsn=2b4a51b1_0 Examination Data Dashboard https://www.ctc.ca.gov/commission/reports/data/titleii-exam
Collect data that connect student growth to teacher preparation programs, when those programs are large enough for the data to be meaningful and reliable.
California should consider collecting the academic achievement gains of students taught by programs' graduates, averaged over the first three years of teaching, when the programs produce enough graduates for those data to be meaningful and reliable. Data that are aggregated at the institution level (e.g., combining elementary and secondary programs), rather than disaggregated by the specific preparation program, have less utility for accountability and continuous improvement purposes than more specific data because institution-level data aggregation can mask significant differences in performance among programs.
Publish first-time and final pass rate data at the program level for all test takers.
Although California publishes final pass rate data of all test takers at the institutional level, the state should publicly report first-time and final pass rate data for all test takers at the program level. Doing so allows the state, programs, and prospective teacher candidates to analyze the strength of programs' ability to prepare teachers in core content areas. Prospective teacher candidates deserve access to relevant information to determine which programs are most likely to enable them to earn a standard teaching license.
California indicated that the CSET data is presented based on a cohort model with all examinations taken during an examination year. There is no report that shows specifically data from the first time an individual attempts the CSET. The state reiterated that the Title II report includes passing rates for the three groups of candidates (completers, completed all non-clinical coursework, and all other enrolled candidates).
California asserted that the term "objective measures of student growth" needs definition. The state asserts that it is a contested term without a consensus definition in student and educator evaluation research. Definition of this term and other key terms throughout this report are necessary to elicit relevant and complete responses from State Educational Agencies such as the California Department of Education. California posits, "What evidence exists to show that the two proposed factors of this goal would yield a policy that improves either the preparation programs or the achievement of students or the well-being of students?" The state further asserts that such a policy must have a strong evidentiary basis because the publication of whichever growth metrics chosen—by default this is typically statewide standardized assessments for cost reasons and comparability across districts—would necessarily confound in part the validity of the instrument(s) by which student growth is assessed—see the literature on value-added measurement. The state provided a link to research on value-added measurement.
The purpose of this goal is to gauge state's policy regarding the transparency of the quality of teacher preparation programs. Evidence of student growth of program graduates can be an indicator of the quality of content and pedagogical knowledge acquired in the program. Licensure exam pass rates are indicative of a program's ability to prepare candidates in the content knowledge need to teach the intended subjects. Regarding the use of student growth to measure teacher effectiveness, California is invited to review NCTQ's research rationale at the bottom of the "Measures of Student Growth" goal. Additionally, NCTQ does not prescribe the types of measures of student growth used by states, but only that they are objective. Some examples of objective measures of student growth, in addition to statewide standardized assessments, are: student learning objectives (SLOs), district-level pre- and post-tests; and teacher-developed assessments. For teachers of non-tested grades and subjects specifically, student growth measures may include: teacher-set goals for student learning; student performance assessments, including portfolio projects, problem-solving protocols and internships; teacher-developed assessments; standardized assessments; and district-established assessments.
1C: Program Performance Measures
The state should examine a number of factors when measuring the performance of and approving teacher preparation programs. Although the quality of both the subject-matter preparation and professional sequence is crucial, there are also additional measures that can provide the state and the public with meaningful, readily understandable indicators of how well programs are doing when it comes to preparing teachers to be successful in the classroom.
States have made great strides in building data systems with the capacity to provide evidence of teacher performance. These same data systems can be used to link teacher effectiveness to the teacher preparation programs from which they came. States should make such data, as well as other objective measures that go beyond licensure test pass rates, central components of their teacher preparation program approval processes, and they should establish precise standards for performance that are more useful for accountability purposes.
National accrediting bodies, such as CAEP, are raising the bar, but are no substitute for states' own policy. A number of states now have somewhat more rigorous academic standards for admission by virtue of requiring that programs meet CAEP's accreditation standards. However, whether CAEP will uniformly uphold its standards (especially as they have already backtracked on the GPA requirement) and deny accreditation to programs that fall short of these admission requirements remains to be seen. Clear state policy would eliminate this uncertainty and send an unequivocal message to programs about the state's expectations.