2017 Alternate Routes Policy
The state should allow a diversity of alternate route providers. This goal was reorganized in 2017.
Alternate Route Providers: Vermont authorizes institutions of higher education (IHE) or "educational organizations" to become approved alternate route teacher preparation program providers. While the Peer Review alternate route is a program run through the Vermont Department of Education, it is not clear that the state ensures that nonprofits, districts, or other non-IHE providers can run alternate route preparation programs.
Vermont Code of Rules, Agency 22, Chapter 010, Section 5990 Vermont Agency of Education, Peer Review- Alternative Route to Licensure: http://education.vermont.gov/educator-quality/become-a-vermont-educator/alternative-route
Encourage diversity of alternate route providers.
Vermont should specifically authorize alternate route programs run by local school districts and nonprofits, as well as institutions of higher education. A robust diversity of providers has the potential to help all programs, both university- and non-university-based, to improve.
Vermont recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
Alternate routes should be structured to do more than just address shortages; they should provide an alternative pipeline for talented individuals to enter the profession. Many states have structured their alternate routes as a streamlined means to certify teachers in shortage subjects, grades, or geographic areas. A true alternate route creates a new pipeline of potential teachers by certifying those with valuable knowledge and skills who did not prepare to teach as undergraduates and are disinclined to fulfill the requirements of a new degree.
Some states claim that the limitations they place on the use of their alternate routes impose quality control. However, states control the criteria for who is admitted and who is licensed. With appropriate standards for admission and program accountability, quality can be safeguarded without casting alternate routes as routes of last resort or branding alternate route teachers "second-class citizens."