2011 Delivering Well Prepared Teachers Policy
The state should use a licensing test to verify that all new teachers meet its professional standards.
Illinois requires all new teachers to pass a pedagogy test based on its standards.
The state requires new teachers to pass its "Assessment of Professional Teaching" test, which assesses candidates on professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills.
Illinois is also part of the Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA) Consortium and began a pilot program in Spring 2011.
Ensure that performance assessments provide a meaningful measure of new teachers' knowledge and skills.
While Illinois is commended for considering the use of a performance-based assessment, the state should proceed with caution until additional data are available on the Teacher Performance Assessment. Additional research is needed to determine how the TPA compares to other teacher tests as well as whether the test's scores are predictive of student achievement. The track record on similar assessments is mixed at best. The two states that currently require the Praxis III performance-based assessment report pass rates of about 99 percent. Given that it takes significant resources to administer a performance-based assessment, a test that nearly every teacher passes is of questionable value.
Illinois recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis. The state added that by 2015, it will require a performance-based assessment for all teacher education programs; programs will begin to phase in starting in 2013. Illinois also noted that it continues to be part of the Teacher Performance Assessment Consortium (TPAC), with full implementation by 2015.