Teacher Effectiveness and the
Equitable Distribution of Effective Teachers
2009 National Forum on Education Policy
Education Commission of the States
July 10, 2009
NCLB and Equitable Distribution of Teachers
• Sec 1111 State Plans, (b)(8)(C)
– Requires states to identify the specific steps they will take to ensure that:
• both schoolwide programs and targeted assistance schools provide instruction
by highly qualified instructional staff
• poor and minority children are not taught at higher rates than other children by
inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers‖
– States must publicly report on the measures used to evaluate progress with
respect to such steps
• Sec 1112 Local Education Agency Plans, (c)(1)(L)
– Requires LEAs to provide an assurance that ―through incentives for voluntary
transfers, the provision of professional development, recruitment programs, or
other effective strategies, that low-income students and minority students are not
taught at higher rates than other students by unqualified, out-of-field, or
ARRA and Equitable Distribution of Teachers
• Title XIV State Fiscal Stabilization Fund: Sec 14005: State Applications, (d)(2)
Assurances, Achieving Equity in Teacher Distribution
– States applying for State Fiscal Stabilization Funds must provide an assurance
that they will ―take actions to improve teacher effectiveness and comply with
section 1111(b)(8)(C) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 6311(b)(8)(C)) in order to address
inequities in the distribution of highly qualified teachers between high- and low-
poverty schools, and to ensure that low-income and minority children are not
taught at higher rates than other children by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-
• State Fiscal Stabilization Fund Guidance
– As part of its application for Stabilization Funding, a State must assure that it will
implement strategies to:
• Increase teacher effectiveness and address inequities in the distribution
of highly qualified teachers
Proposed Teacher Effectiveness Assurance Metrics
• Number and percentage of teachers in highest-poverty and lowest-poverty schools in
the state who are highly qualified
• Number and percentage of teachers and principals rated at each performance level in
each LEA’s evaluation system
• Number and percentage of LEA teacher and principal evaluation systems that require
evidence of student achievement outcomes
• Note: Metrics will be made available for public comment in the Federal Register. In
Phase Two applications for stabilization funds, states must provide plan for collecting
and reporting metrics.
Teach For America Teachers: Highly Qualified and Effective
• Teach For America teachers are highly qualified (Title I regs)
– Teachers participate in an alternative route to certification program where they
• receive high-quality professional development that is sustained, intensive, and
classroom-focused in order to have a positive and lasting impact on classroom
instruction, before and while teaching;
• participate in a program of intensive supervision that consists of structured
guidance and regular ongoing support for teachers or a teacher mentoring
• assume functions as a teacher only for a specified period of time not to
exceed three years; and
• demonstrate satisfactory progress toward full certification as prescribed by the
• Teach For America teachers are effective
– Most rigorous research has found that corps members’ impact on student
achievement exceeds that of experienced and certified teachers in the same
– Evidence of corps members’ positive impact spans all subject areas and grade
levels, from pre-K through high schools.
Effectiveness at the high-school level
Making a Difference? The Effects of Teach For America in High School
The Urban Institute/CALDER (2008-2009)
• Researchers used NC end-of-course student exam data from 2000 through 2006.
• Researchers found that Teach For America corps members were, on average, more
effective than non-Teach For America teachers in all subject areas, especially in math
• That was true even when Teach For America corps members were compared with
experienced, fully certified teachers.
• These findings were confirmed in a 2009 update of the study, which employed a larger
sample of corps members and additional comparison groups.
• In all cases, the positive impact of having a Teach For America corps member was at
least twice that of having a teacher with three or more years of experience relative to a
Effectiveness at the elementary- and middle-school levels
The Effects of Teach For America on Students
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. (2004)
• Researchers used random assignment of students to teachers—research methodology
widely regarded as the gold standard.
• Researchers found that students of Teach For America corps members attained greater
gains in math than did students of other teachers, including veteran and certified
teachers, and scored about the same as students of other teachers in reading.
• The study also found that corps members were working in the highest-needed
classrooms in the country, where students begin the year, on average, at the 14th
percentile against the national norm.
Teach For America Regions
In the 2009-10 school year, over 7,300 first- and second-year Teach For America
corps members will teach in 35 regions across the country.
Growing Our Scale and Impact: Corps Members
Teach For America is striving to reach even greater national scale, more than
doubling our corps member and alumni base by the year 2015.
12,000 Corps Growth
2000 2005 2010 2015
By 2015 we project that we will have 13,000 corps members reaching
more than 800,000 students across 48 communities.
Growing Our Scale and Impact: Alumni
As we strive to strengthen our alumni network and achieve our leadership
initiative goals, we are even more compelled by the prospect of what our
alumni will accomplish when we begin to see the impact of a larger, more
successful corps with greater support as alumni.
6,000 3,984 4,601
2000 2005 2010 2015
At the same time, we will have built an unprecedented pipeline of leadership advocating for low-income
students, with over 40,000 alumni driving change from inside and outside the education system.
For More Information
Vice President for Federal and State Policy
Teach For America