On Thursday, April 28, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) announced the release of the new InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards: A Resource for State Dialogue. The standards represent clear expectations about what all teachers should know and be able to do if they are to improve achievement of the next generation of students (from grades K-12) and are intended to set the foundation for educators, states, and policymakers to achieve their education reform goals. The revision of the standards has been a state-led effort in partnership with the teaching profession, led by a committee of CCSSO’s Interstate Teacher and Assessment Support Consortium (InTASC). The committee included practicing teachers, teacher educators, and state education agency staff. We previously posted about the draft standards, noting how the new standards incorporate an interest in collaborative professional cultures in high school, describing key changes represented in the new standards, and inviting interested parties to comment on their relevance for high school teaching. The model core teaching standards are voluntary; CCSSO is encouraging states to review their professional teaching standards and either adapt or adopt the InTASC model core standards as part of that review process. Thirty-eight states currently have teaching standards that were based on the 1992 INTASC standards. While CCSSO expects the new model standards will be used as a foundation for a wide range of policies, one early way they likely will be used is in the creation or revision of statewide systems for teacher evaluation. Currently, states are deliberating their definitions of effective teaching; from those definitions, measurable criteria for effective teaching would provide the basis for teacher evaluations. Probably the most controversial criterion being deliberated is student performance; many states are in the process of determining how to measure student performance and growth and how to use those measures fairly, validly, and reliably as a measure of teacher effectiveness. A major challenge with this endeavor at the high school level is that there are very few statewide standardized exams that can provide data on student growth. Thus, many states are looking to define other criteria for teacher performance at the high school level. The InTASC model core teaching standards provide material for states to consider as they craft those other criteria of effectiveness. For more information on how states may use the model core teaching standards, see State Policy Implications of the Model Core Teaching Standards
Note: This blog post was originally authored under the auspices of the National High School Center at the American Institutes for Research (AIR). The National High School Center’s blog, High School Matters, which ran until March 2013, provided an objective perspective on the latest research, issues, and events that affected high school improvement. The CCRS Center plans to continue relevant work originally developed under the National High School Center grant. National High School Center blog posts that pertain to CCRS Center issues are included on this website as a resource to our stakeholders.