The state should collect and publicly report key data on the quality of teacher preparation programs. This goal was reorganized in 2017.
Student Growth Data: As part of its state accountability system, West Virginia requires educator preparation programs to submit an annual report to CAEP, which requires programs to collect and report data on the performance and effectiveness of program graduates as measured by the impact of completers' teaching on P-12 learning and development. However, the state does not specify the data that must be collected to satisfy this requirement.
Additional Program Data: The CAEP report required by West Virginia does require programs to collect some objective, meaningful data to measure the performance of traditional teacher preparation programs. These data include indicators of teaching effectiveness; results of employer surveys, including retention and employment milestones; results of completer surveys; graduation rates from preparation programs; ability of completers to meet licensing requirements; ability of completers to be hired in education positions for which they were prepared; and student loan default rates.
While data reflecting program performance are required by CAEP and for CAEP compliance, West Virginia has embedded this requirement in state statute.
Specify the type of data needed to connect student growth to teacher preparation programs, when those programs are large enough for the data to be meaningful and reliable.
While West Virginia, as a result of requiring the submission of an annual report to CAEP, requires that program graduates' impact on student outcomes are connected to the program they completed, the state should specify that this data should include objective measures, such as value-added on standardized tests.
Codify the collection of other meaningful data that reflect program performance.
West Virginia collects some objective, meaningful data on educator preparation program completers, but the state should require collecting these data as a matter of state law, rather than as a consequence of requiring an annual report to CAEP.
West Virginia recognized the factual accuracy of this analysis.
1C: Program Performance Measures
The state should examine a number of factors when measuring the performance of and approving teacher preparation programs. 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.
States have made great strides in building data systems with the capacity to provide evidence of teacher performance. 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.
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. Clear state policy would eliminate this uncertainty and send an unequivocal message to programs about the state's expectations.