Over 2,000 North Carolina Teachers have failed a teacher licensing exam leading the state school board to study the impact that exam has on teacher performance. Bottom line: minor impact on reading and no impact based on the math score. If the teacher certification exam is keeping people from teaching but is not a good indicator of teacher performance – it has to change.
The Charlotte Observer article really does a great job summarizing the study. The main issue with the math section of the elementary teacher certification exam is that it is overly complex for teachers who teach elementary students. The North Carolina Standards Commission looked at a thorough analysis and came to the conclusion that the failure rate, cost and lack of positive impact on students calls for a change.
The commission is recommending that the State Board vote to accept Praxis exams in February along with the Pearson exams – and then only Praxis math starting in July. All other tests in North Carolina are Praxis exams – with the exception of the General curriculum test for Elementary education and Exceptional children.
There are a lot of moving parts in teacher testing right now and the pendulum is definitely swinging back towards focusing more on teaching then on tests.