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. Vermont reports little school-level data that can help support the equitable distribution of teacher talent.
Vermont does not collect or publicly report most 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 and the ratio of new to veteran teachers. Vermont also does not report on teacher absenteeism or turnover rates.
Vermont does report on the percentage of teachers on emergency credentials and the percentage of highly qualified teachers. Commendably, these data are reported for each school, rather than aggregated by district. Vermont's Highly Qualified Teacher Plan, published in February 2007, compares the percentage of highly qualified teachers by poverty levels and minority populations, but it has not been updated.
Vermont's Highly Qualified Teacher Plan http://www.ed.gov/programs/teacherqual/hqtplans/vt.pdf 2009-2010 School-Level HQT and Emergency License Data http://education.vermont.gov/new/html/licensing/hqt.html#data
Use a teacher quality index to report publicly 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. Vermont 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.
Vermont 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.
Ensure that data are current.
It is important to keep data updated and current in order to provide the public with an accurate picture of teacher distribution across schools in districts. Vermont should update the data it reports on the percentage of highly qualified teachers at the school level, which it has not done since 2006-2007.
Vermont was helpful in providing NCTQ with the facts necessary for this analysis.