Identifying Effective Teachers Policy
The state should publicly report districts' distribution of teacher talent among schools to identify inequities in schools serving disadvantaged children.
Providing comprehensive reporting may be the state's most important role for ensuring the equitable distribution of teachers among schools. Florida reports little school-level data that can help support the equitable distribution of teacher talent.
Florida collects and publicly reports some of the data recommended by NCTQ. The state does not provide a school-level teacher quality index that demonstrates the academic backgrounds of a school's teachers, but it does report on the percentage of newly hired teachers for each school. While Florida does not report on percentages of teachers with emergency credentials—as the state indicates it has no noncertified teachers—it does provide data on classes taught by teachers temporarily assigned to areas outside of their field of specialization. The state also does not report on teacher absenteeism or turnover rates.
Florida reports on the percentage of highly qualified teachers. Commendably, these data are reported for each school, rather than aggregated by district. The state is also commended for comparing the average percentages of highly qualified teachers in high- and low-poverty schools within each district.
Florida Public School Accountability Report 2009-2010 http://doeweb-prd.doe.state.fl.us/eds/nclbspar/year0910/main0910.cfm
Use a teacher quality index to publicly report about each school.
A teacher quality index, such as the one developed by the Illinois Education Research Council, with data including teachers' average SAT or ACT scores, the percentage of teachers failing basic skills licensure tests at least once, the selectivity of teachers' undergraduate colleges and the percentage of new teachers, can shine a light on how equitably teachers are distributed both across and within districts. Florida should ensure that individual school report cards include such data in a manner that translates these factors into something easily understood by the public, such as a color-coded matrix indicating a school's high or low score.
Publish other data that facilitate comparisons across schools.
Florida should collect and report other school-level data that reflect the stability of a school's faculty, including the rates of teacher absenteeism and turnover.
Provide comparative data based on school demographics.
As Florida does with highly qualified teachers, the state should provide comparative data for schools with similar poverty and minority populations. This would yield a more comprehensive picture of gaps in the equitable distribution of teachers.
Florida commented that its reporting requirements, which currently include teacher turnover, will be more comprehensive beginning in 2011-12, with new value-added calculation. In addition, under Race to the Top, Florida is doing a number of descriptive and comparative analyses that will be published throughout the grant.