Program Reporting Requirements: Louisiana

General Teacher Preparation Policy

Goal

The state's approval process for teacher preparation programs should hold programs accountable for the quality of the teachers they produce. This goal was reorganized in 2021.

Meets
Suggested Citation:
National Council on Teacher Quality. (2021). Program Reporting Requirements: Louisiana results. State Teacher Policy Database. [Data set].
Retrieved from: https://www.nctq.org/yearbook/state/LA-Program-Reporting-Requirements-89

Analysis of Louisiana's policies

Minimum Standards of Performance: Louisiana has minimum standards of performance for programs, but it has not established standards across all data that is collected. Currently, Louisiana has identified a standard of performance for licensure assessment data to identify "At-Risk" (80% to 86% pass rate) and "Low Performing" (less than 79% pass rate) programs, but these standards may be too low to be meaningful.

Beginning 2022, programs will be assessed using the Teacher Preparation Quality Rating System. Factors included in this rating system include: preparation program experience, meeting educator workforce needs, and teacher quality. Louisiana has set minimum standards of performance for each.  Program experience ratings will be determined by on-site reviews which measure program quality on candidate selection, program content, clinical placement, program performance management. Programs are evaluated on how well they meet workforce needs by the percentage of completers in high need certification areas and the percentage of candidates completing residencies in high need schools. Points are assigned for teacher quality by the percentage of program completers in each evaluation rating category.  

Program Accountability: Currently, Louisiana holds programs accountable for the one standard that is in place. Programs can move through various levels of consequences based on their classification as "At-Risk" and "Low Performing" and how many years they have remained at these levels. Failure to improve eventually results in loss of program approval.

Beginning in 2022, the state will use the Louisiana Teacher Preparation Quality Rating System as the basis for program approval for both university and non-university providers and hold programs accountable at the pathway level. The system has four ratings: Level 1 (Ineffective), Level 2 (Needs Improvement), Level 3 (Effective), and Level 4 (Highly Effective). Programs that receive a Level 1 or 2 are required to undergo a corrective action period with interventions or consequences specified by the Board of Education, including possible loss of program approval. Level 1 and 2 programs must also develop an improvement plan that is approved and monitored by the Board of Education. Programs that receive a Level 1 or 2 rating are rated every two years, and Level 3 and Level 4 programs are rated every four years. Program evaluations are based on the criteria: preparation program experience (rated 1-4), the percentage of completers in high need certification areas and schools, and the value-added results of program completers. This system is being phased in, with 2022-2023 as the first year that a program's rating will determine whether or not it is renewed.

Programs that do not maintain a rating of Level 3 or better, "shall undergo a corrective action period" which includes an improvement plan. Progress reports based on the improvement plan are reviewed and be subject to one of the following interventions:
"a.require the provider to enact certain improvement recommendations for one or more pathways or programs;
b.designate program(s) as low performing and at risk of low performance per the federal Higher Education Act;
c.limit or discontinue enrollment for one or more pathways or programs;
d.discontinue the provider's ability to recommend teacher candidates for certification in one or more pathways or programs."

State Report Cards: Louisiana publishes annual report cards showing the data the state has collected on individual teacher preparation programs. These data are available on Louisiana's Teacher Preparation Data Dashboards. The state also publishes institutional ratings on the report cards. Additionally, beginning winter 2020-2021, the Louisiana Department of Education (LDE) will annually produce and make publicly available on its website a performance profile for each approved preparation provider and will biennially produce and make publicly available on its website a quality rating for each approved preparation provider. As of January 2021, these reports had yet to be published.

Program Approval Process: Louisiana maintains full authority over teacher preparation program approval and continuing approval. Additionally, all public universities are required to earn and maintain CAEP accreditation. 

Citation

Recommendations for Louisiana

As a result of Louisiana's strong policies on reporting teacher preparation accountability data and holding preparation programs to meaningful standards based on data, no recommendations are provided.

State response to our analysis

Louisiana was helpful in providing NCTQ with facts that enhanced this analysis. The state noted that it launched the Louisiana Teacher Prep website, which includes data the state has collected about individual preparation providers. Louisiana also indicated that ongoing program approval is based upon performance on the Teacher Preparation Quality Rating System.

Updated: March 2021

How we graded

1D: Program Reporting Requirements 

  • Minimum Standards: The state should establish a minimum standard of performance for each category of data that is collected.
  • Articulated Consequences for Failure to Meet Minimum Standards: The state should have articulated consequences for programs failing to meet minimum standards of performance or other program review criteria and should require specific steps to develop a remediation plan. Program accountability should include the possibility of the loss of program approval.
  • Annual Reporting: The state should publish an annual report card that provides data collected for each individual teacher preparation program as part of the program approval process or the report card provides data that indicates the quality of preparation provided by an institution or program (e.g. licensure pass rates, teaching effectiveness of program graduates, employer satisfaction survey data).
  • Approval Authority: The state should retain full authority over its process approving teacher preparation programs and should not grant any approval authority to accrediting bodies.
Minimum Standards
One-quarter of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if minimum standards of performance are set for each category of data the teacher preparation programs are required to report.

Articulated Consequences for Failure to Meet Minimum Standards

One-quarter of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if it holds teacher preparation programs accountable, and clearly articulates the consequences for failing to meet the minimum standards, which may include loss of program approval.

Annual Reporting
One-quarter of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if it publishes data collected as part of the state's program approval process of individual teacher preparation programs on an annual basis or, the state will earn one-quarter of a point if it publishes data that indicates the quality of preparation provided by an institution or program (e.g. licensure pass rates, teaching effectiveness of program graduates, employer satisfaction survey data) on an annual basis.

Approval Authority

One-quarter of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if it retains full authority over the process for approving teacher preparation programs.

Research rationale

The state should examine a number of factors when measuring the performance of and approving teacher preparation programs.[1] 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.[2]

States have made great strides in building data systems with the capacity to provide evidence of teacher performance.[3] 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.[4]

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.[5] Clear state policy would eliminate this uncertainty and send an unequivocal message to programs about the state's expectations.[6]


[1] For general information about teacher preparation program approval see Rotherham, A. J., & Mead, S. (2004). Back to the future: The history and politics of state teacher licensure and certification. In F. Hess, A. J. Rotherham, & K. Walsh (Eds.), A qualified teacher in every classroom (11-47). Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press. Retrieved from https://www.nctq.org/nctq/research/1109818629821.pdf
[2] For additional discussion and research of how teacher education programs can add value to their teachers, see National Council on Teacher Quality. (2017). Teacher Prep Review. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/teacherPrep/2016/home.do
[3] Walsh, K., & Jacobs, S. (2007). Alternative certification isn't alternative. Thomas B. Fordham Institute. Retrieved from
http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED498382.pdf

[4] For additional research on the status of teacher quality and the strengths and weaknesses of accreditation programs and policies in the U.S., see: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education. (2010). The secretary's seventh annual report on teacher quality: A highly qualified teacher in every classroom. Retrieved from https://www2.ed.gov/about/reports/annual/teachprep/t2r7.pdf
[5] For a discussion of the lack of evidence that national accreditation status enhances teacher preparation programs' effectiveness, see: Ballou, D., & Podgursky, M. (1999, July). Teacher training and licensure: A layman's guide. Marci Kanstoroom and Chester E. Finn., Jr. (eds.), In Better teachers, better schools (pp. 45-47). Washington, DC: Thomas B. Fordham Foundation. Retrieved from http://www.edexcellence.net/sites/default/files/publication/pdfs/btrtchrs_10.pdf; Greenberg, J., & Walsh, K. (2008, June). No common denominator: The preparation of elementary teachers in mathematics by America's education schools. Washington, DC: National Council on Teacher Quality. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/No_Common_Denominator_NCTQ_Report; Walsh, K., Glaser, D., & Wilcox, D. (2006, May). What education schools aren't teaching about reading and what elementary teachers aren't learning. Washington, DC: National Council on Teacher Quality. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/What_Ed_Schools_Arent_Teaching_About_Reading_NCTQ_Report
[6] See Walsh, K., Joseph, N., & Lewis, A. (2016, November). Within our grasp: Achieving higher admissions standards in teacher prep. 2016 State Teacher Policy Yearbook Report Series. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/Admissions_Yearbook_Report