From Wake County Schools:
More than 300 Wake County Public School System educators earned certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards this year, helping WCPSS establish a number of records in supporting teachers who pursue and achieve National Board Certification.
WCPSS is first in the nation and the state in the total number of teachers who earned certification this year. And WCPSS now has more than 2,000 teachers who have earned certification.
WCPSS had 319 teachers earn certification this year, the largest number in a single year to earn certification for a school district in NC. In each of the last two years, 197 earned certification. With this latest round of teacher certifications, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards reports that WCPSS currently employs a total of 2,031 teachers who have earned National Board certification. This is the largest number of National Board certified teachers in any school district in the U.S.
The NC Department of Public Instruction reports that 2,277 teachers earned certification across the state this year. North Carolina had the largest class of teachers earning certification of any state this year. DPI reports that 17,957 North Carolina teachers have earned certification from the National Board.
Top WCPSS Schools
Knightdale High had 13 teachers earn National Board certification, the most of any WCPSS school this year. Green Hope and Sanderson high schools each had 10 teachers earn certification.
Seven teachers earned certification at Holly Grove Middle. Six earned certification at Broughton High, Garner Magnet High, Holly Grove Elementary, Holly Springs High and Panther Creek High.
WCPSS had 153 elementary, 61 middle, 104 high school and one Special Education Services teacher earn certification this year.
Certification has Benefits
Knightdale High principal Carla Jernigan was excited that a large number of her teachers earned certification this year. The 13 earning certification this year means a quarter of the school’s teachers have earned certification.
“This shows that our teachers are really committed to excellence–for themselves and for their students,” said Jernigan. “The large number of NBCT’s at KHS means that having National Boards will soon be the norm, not the exception.”
Knightdale High annually holds a “Teaching Excellence Celebration” where National Board Certified Teachers are honored. The school has a National Board School Contact person who works closely with Carolann Wade, the WCPSS National Board coordinator to develop and share materials with teacher candidates seeking certification.
The school sponsored after school and weekend meetings to support teacher candidates seeking certification at Knightdale High and made teachers aware of similar sessions at other schools across the county.
At Sanderson High, principal Greg Decker says the school has a wonderful support system in place for our teachers.
“We have scheduled meetings through the year,” said Dr. Decker. “Teachers seeking certification have the opportunity to meet with fellow teachers who serve as accountability partners, readers, editors and mentors throughout the entire process.”
Decker said the heart of the National Board certification process is reflective teaching practices.
“This incorporates effective professional learning teams, effective use of high quality student performance data, and the ability to differentiate instruction in the classroom,” said Decker. “We all know that great teachers often produce successful students.”
At Sanderson, many of the National Board certified teachers are teacher leaders in the school.
“Sanderson governance process is highly collaborative,” said Decker. “With great teachers focused on student learning it makes it a natural process to delegate responsibilities to great teacher leaders.”
Certification is Symbol of Excellence
In a congressionally mandated report, the National Research Council (NRC) confirmed that National Board certified teachers advance student achievement and learning, stay in the classroom longer, support new and struggling teachers and assume other school leadership roles. The NRC acknowledged that students taught by National Board certified teachers make higher gains on achievement tests than students taught by non-board-certified teachers.
National Board Certification is a voluntary assessment program designed to recognize and reward great teachers—and make them better. While state licensing systems set basic requirements to teach in each state, National Board certified teachers have successfully demonstrated advanced teaching knowledge, skills and practices. Certification is achieved through a rigorous, performance-based assessment that typically takes one to three years to complete.
Created by educators and policymakers in 1987, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards advances the quality of teaching and learning by developing professional standards for accomplished teaching; creating and administering National Board Certification, a voluntary system to certify teachers who meet those standards.