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Feds Review State's Efforts At Quality Teaching

Last week, the USDE announced that Illinois' efforts to ensure that its teachers were all 'highly qualified' passed muster but would require some revisions.  Now, here's the explanation from the USDE detailing what the Feds think ISBE needs to do (see below). 

It's written in bureaucratic gobbledygook, but among other things, it indicates just how low the standards for compliance with this part of NCLB seem to be, and also that ISBE and the Feds have had some previous back and forth over  ISBE's definition of what makes someone HQ in the first place, and -- this is key, really -- the state's lack of a plan to address the equity provisions in NCLB regarding poor students' access to HQT.

Assessing
State Progress in Meeting the Highly Qualified Teacher (HQT) Goals

Protocol
for Department of Education (ED) Review to Determine

Which States
Must Submit Revised HQT Plans

State:
ILLINOIS

Date of Review:  5/3/06

Overall Recommendation:

    _____ Revised Plan Not
    Required:
    The State is making substantial progress and is not required
    to submit a revised HQT plan

    __X__ Revised Plan Required: 
    The State has shown good-faith effort in meeting the HQT goal but a
    revised HQT plan is required

    _____ Revised Plan Required,
    Possible Sanctions: 
    The State has not shown good-faith effort
    in meeting the HQT goal.  A revised HQT plan is required and the
    Department will consider appropriate administrative actions or sanctions

Comments to support recommendation:

  • The
      State has made significant progress in establishing HQT definitions
      that are consistent with the NCLB HQT requirements. 
  • Illinois
      has documented improvements in data collection and reporting procedures. 
      The State produces annual report cards with the required HQT information
      and submitted complete 2004-05 CSPR data.
  • Illinois
      reported that 98 percent of classes statewide were taught by HQTs in
      2004-05.  While the rate was over 90 percent in all categories,
      the State reported gaps between high- and low-poverty schools. 
  • While
      the State has many successful strategies that address teaching inequities
      in schools with large high-poverty and minority student populations,
      it lacks a cohesive written plan to ensure that all students have access
      to a high quality teacher.

Decision

Approve ______X________
Signature Date 5/10/2006

Disapprove ____________ Signature
________________________ Date ____________

Requirement 1:
Appropriate HQT DefinitionsA State must have a definition
of a highly qualified teacher that is consistent with the law,
and it must use this definition to determine the status of all teachers,
including special education teachers, who teach core academic subjects
[ESEA 9101(23); IDEA 602(10)].   

     

     

     

     

     

    Y/N/U Evidence
    Y Does the State have an appropriate
      HQT definition in place?
    Y Do the definitions apply to
      all teachers of core academic subjects, including special education
      teachers?
    N Has the State used these definitions
      to determine the HQ status of all teachers?
    N If the State has established
      HOUSSE procedures, has it completed its review of teachers who are not
      new to the profession?

Y=Yes; N=No; U=Undecided

Finding:

___ Requirement 1 has been
met

_X_ Requirement 1 has been
partially met

___ Requirement 1 has not been
met

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline*

Supporting Narrative:

  • The
      U.S. Department of Education (ED) conducted an NCLB Title II, Part A,
      monitoring review of Illinois and is satisfied that the State has implemented
      the correct HQT definitions and procedures.  Illinois was issued
      findings with regard to determining the HQT status of new and veteran
      special education teachers, but has provided an acceptable corrective
      action plan to ensure that special education teachers are included in
      all HQT definitions and procedures.
  • Illinois is in the
      process of conducting its final HQT and HOUSSE review of its teaching
      workforce.

Source: 
SEA Monitoring Protocol, Monitoring Report for the March 2-4, 2005 visit
(6/1/05), Illinois State Response (7/27/05), ED Resolution Letter (8/10/05).


Requirement 2:  Public Reporting of HQT DataA State must
provide parents and the public with accurate, complete reports on the
number and percentage of classes in core
academic subjects taught by highly qualified teachers.  States
and districts must provide these data to parents through school, district,
and State report cards.  Parents of students in schools receiving
Title I funds must be notified that they may request information regarding
the professional qualifications of their childrens teachers, and
they must be notified if their children have been assigned to or taught
for four or more consecutive weeks by a teacher who is not highly qualified
[ESEA 1111(h)(6) and 1119(i)].   

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Y/N/U Evidence
    Y Does the State have an Annual
      State Report Card that contains required information on the qualifications
      of teachers, including the percentage of classes not taught by highly
      qualified teachers?
    Y Does the State have annual
      report cards for all of its LEAs and schools that contain required information
      on the qualifications of teachers, including the percentage of classes
      not taught by highly qualified teachers?
    Y Does the State assure that
      all report cards are available to the public?
    Y Does the SEA assure that principals
      in all Title I schools send the required notification to parents when
      children are taught by teachers who are not HQ? Does the SEA have evidence
      that notification occurs in a timely way?
    Y Does the SEA ensure that parents
      of students in Title I districts are notified that they may request
      information regarding the professional qualifications of their childrens
      teachers?

Y=Yes; N=No; U=Undecided

Finding:

_X_ Requirement 2 has been
met

___ Requirement 2 has been
partially met

___ Requirement 2 has not been
met

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

Website link to report cards:
http://webprod1.isbe.net/ereportcard/publicsite/getSearchCriteria.aspx

The most recent report card
data are for the 2005 year.

Were HQT data included in the
report cards? Yes

Other information (if available):

  • The
      State issues annual report cards at all levels in accordance with the
      NCLB HQT requirements. 
  • As
      part of its Title II, Part A, monitoring review of Illinois, ED determined
      that the State was in compliance with Title I hiring and parental notification
      issues. 

Source: 
SEA Monitoring Protocol, Monitoring Report for the March 2-4, 2005 visit
(6/1/05), Illinois State Response (7/27/05), ED Resolution Letter (8/10/05).

Requirement 3: 
Data Reporting to EDStates must submit complete and accurate
data to the U.S. Secretary of Education on their implementation of the
HQT requirements as part of their Consolidated State Performance Report
(CSPR).  In addition to reporting the number and percentage of
core academic classes being taught by highly qualified teachers in all
schools, States must report on the number and percentage of core academic
classes being taught in high- and
low-poverty schools [ESEA 1111(h)(4)(G) and 9101(23)]. 
States must also provide additional information in the CSPR that describes,
for classes taught by non-HQ teachers, the reasons why the teachers
are not highly qualified.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Y/N/U Evidence
    Y Did the State submit complete
      HQT data in the 2004-05 CSPR?
    Y Are the submitted HQT data
      reported at the classroom level?
    Y Were data disaggregated for
      elementary and secondary schools?
    Y Were data disaggregated by
      high- and low-poverty elementary schools and high- and low-poverty secondary
      schools?
    N Did the State provide specific
      information describing the reasons why teachers are not highly qualified?

Y=Yes; N=No; U=Undecided

Finding:

___ Requirement 3 has been
met

_X_ Requirement 3 has been
partially met

___ Requirement 3 has not been
met

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

  • Illinois
      reported complete CSPR data for 2004-05. The State reported that 98
      percent of classes statewide were taught by HQTs.
  • Illinois
      did not provide specific information describing the reasons why teachers
      are not highly qualified.

Source: 
Consolidated State Performance Report, March 2006.


Requirement 4:  Equity PlansStates
must have a plan in place to ensure that poor or minority children are
not taught by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers at
higher rates than are other children [ESEA 1111(b)(8)(C)].

 

 

 

Y/N/U Evidence
Y Does the State have a plan
  in place to ensure that poor or minority children are not taught by
  inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers at higher rates
  than are other children?
N Does the plan include specific
  strategies for addressing inequities in teacher assignment?

Y=Yes; N=No; U=Undecided

Finding:

___ Requirement 4 has been
met

_X_ Requirement 4 has been
partially met

___ Requirement 4 has not been
met

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

  • Illinois
      received a finding on its lack of an equity plan during its NCLB Title
      II, Part A, monitoring review.  ED received and accepted a corrective
      action plan that provided the States approach to addressing staffing
      inequities between high- and low-poverty schools.  The approach
      outlined in the States response did not provide enough detail to
      determine whether the plan adequately addresses EDs equity plan requirements.

Source: 
SEA Monitoring Protocol, Monitoring Report for the March 2-4, 2005 visit
(6/1/05), Illinois State Response (7/27/05), ED Resolution Letter (8/10/05).


Analysis of the States Progress Toward Meeting the HQT Goal:

Has the State made annual
progress in increasing the percent of classes taught by highly qualified
teachers?

2002-03 data (from 2004
CSPR):

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

      School Type Total
      Number of Core Academic Classes
    Number
      of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
    Percentage
      of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
    All
      Schools in State
    NA NA --
    All
      Elementary Schools
    NA NA NA
     
      All Secondary Schools
    NA NA NA
     
      High-Poverty Schools
    NA NA --
     
      Low-Poverty Schools
    NA NA NA

2003-04 data (from 2005
CSPR):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  School Type Total
  Number of Core Academic Classes
Number
  of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
Percentage
  of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
All
  Schools in State
144,702 142,102 98.2
All
  Elementary Schools
-- -- --
 
  All Secondary Schools
-- -- --
 
  High-Poverty Schools
26,062 24,352 93.4
 
  Low-Poverty Schools
37,434 37,321 99.7


2004-05 data (from 2006 CSPR):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  School Type Total
  Number of Core Academic Classes
Number
  of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
Percentage
  of Core Academic Classes Taught by Highly Qualified Teachers
All
  Schools in State
146,280 143,619 98.2
Elementary
  Level
 
 
  High-Poverty Schools
21,981 20,640 93.9
 
  Low-Poverty Schools
35,827 35,751 99.8
All
  Elementary Schools
108,245 106,468 98.4

Secondary
  Level

 
 
  High-Poverty Schools
  9,338   8,573 91.8
 
  Low-Poverty Schools
13,120 13,089 99.8
 
  All Secondary Schools
38,035 37,151 97.7

Finding:

    ___ The State is making
    annual progress in increasing the percentage of classes taught by highly
    qualified teachers

    _X_ The State is not making
    annual progress in increasing the percentage of classes taught by highly
    qualified teachers

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

  • Illinois
      changed its data collection methods between 2003-04 and 2004-05. 
      Prior to 2004-05, the State provided estimates, not actual counts, of
      the number and percentage of classes taught by HQTs and excluded special
      education teachers from the data.  In addition, the State revised
      its HOUSSE procedures because the former criteria did not meet the statutory
      requirements. Therefore, it is not possible to measure the States
      annual progress.

Source: 
Consolidated State Performance Reports.

The 2004-05 CSPR data must show that the State has made substantial
progress in reaching the goal that, after the 2005-06 school year,

100 percent of all core academic classes will be taught by a highly
qualified teacher.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Y/N/U/NA Evidence
N Is the percentage of classes
  taught by highly qualified teachers in high-poverty elementary schools
  reasonably close to (e.g., within 5 points) the percentage of classes
  taught by highly qualified teachers in low-poverty elementary schools?
N Is the percentage of classes
  taught by highly qualified teachers in high-poverty secondary schools
  reasonably close to (e.g., within 5 points) the percentage of classes
  taught by highly qualified teachers in low-poverty secondary schools?
U Has the State made substantial
  progress since 2002-03 in reaching the goal of 100 percent of classes
  taught by highly qualified teachers?
Y Are at least 90 percent of
  classes, in total, taught by highly qualified teachers?
Y Are at least 90 percent of
  elementary school classes taught by highly qualified teachers?
Y Are at least 90 percent of
  secondary school classes taught by highly qualified teachers?
U If more than 90 percent of
  classes are taught by highly qualified teachers, do the data on teachers
  who remain non-HQT suggest special cases that may make it difficult
  for the State to meet the HQT goal?

Y=Yes; N=No; U=Undecided; NA=Not
Applicable

Finding:

_X_ The State has made substantial
progress in meeting the HQT goal

___ The State has not made
substantial progress in meeting the HQT goal

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

  • Though
      the State changed its HQT reporting procedures for the 2004-05 CSPR
      data collection, making it impossible to measure annual progress, it
      is clear that the State is close to meeting the 100 percent HQT goal
      by the end of the 2005-06 school year.  In 2004-05, Illinois reported
      that 98 percent of classes statewide were taught by HQTs.  While
      the percentage of classes taught by HQTs was above 90 percent in all
      categories, the State reported gaps between high- and low-poverty schools6
      percentage points at the elementary level and 8 percentage points at
      the secondary level. 
  • Illinois
      did not provide CSPR data for 2002-03.
  • Illinois
      did not indicate if there are any special cases that may make it difficult
      for the State to meet the HQT goal.

Source: 
Consolidated State Performance Reports.


How does the States progress in meeting the HQT goal align with its
progress in ensuring that all schools make adequate yearly progress
toward the goal of improvement in student achievement in reading and
mathematics?

     

     

     

    Y/N/U/NA Evidence
    N Does improved and exemplary
      statewide student achievement on NAEP or on the State assessment indicate
      that significant revision to the States HQT plan is not required,
      even if more than 10 percent of classes are taught by teachers who are
      not HQ? 
      Do districts or schools that
      are in need of improvement or in corrective action status have higher
      percentages of teachers who are not highly qualified than do other schools?

Finding:

    ___ The State is making
    adequate yearly progress in student achievement in nearly all of its
    districts and schools

    ___ The State is not making
    adequate yearly progress in student achievement in a substantial number
    of its schools or districts

    ___ The State is not making
    substantial progress in meeting the HQT goal in many of the schools
    and districts that are not making AYP

      ___
Additional information needed to make determination

            _______ Date Requested ______ Submission
Deadline

Supporting Narrative:

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