Teacher Licensure Task Force

Listening Session Notes – Group 3

Initial Teacher Licensure Task Force

October 17, 2013


1. School for the deaf in Faribault

2. Teacher of writing and math remediation

3. Preschool teacher

4. Works w/ licensure and w/master’s program

5. School Board member, member of the Task Force

6. Senator, member of the Task Force

7. Works for MDE on educator evaluation

8. Master’s student at Hamline

9. Trying to obtain teacher license, currently teaching preschool

10. SPED teacher, Board of Teaching member, facilitator of discussion

11. Teacher at a Spanish Language Academy

12. Teacher at a Spanish immersion school

13. Professor, teaches math

Prompt: What issue with the MTLE is of most concern to you?

• Study materials are absolutely necessary

o Do away with the test

• Test isn’t tailored to specifics of what they’re teaching

o 5th grade math has different needs and skill requirements from AP Chemistry

• Multi-paragraph, 50 multiple choice questions in 60 minutes is unreasonable

o Test would be inappropriate for the students they’re teaching

o Shame on Pearson

• Test is flawed

o Pearson is unwilling to give copies of the test

o Pearson is inflexible, won’t give any access

o How much abuse do we take?

• Some of her colleagues told her that the MTLE was easier than the Praxis

o Has IA, CO, WY, ?? teaching licenses. Lack of reciprocity is noticeable

o There is no national test. Why?

o There must be some standard. Why not Praxis?

• Accessibility, time are most critical

• Expectation level is labeled “basic” which is misleading

o Places an unconscionable bias on teaching profession

o Diversity issues

o Should be called a “college exit test”

• Non-native language speakers have additional barriers

• High standards are great, but multiple choice test is not it

• Working on EdTPA now, seems like a fair assessment. A “bear,” but appropriate

Question: What is the relationship/contract with Pearson?

• A: contract through 2015

Question: How long is the process for an RFP?

• A: 18-24 months

• Pearson is opening up and working on reforms very begrudgingly. Still inflexible.

o Is Pearson fulfilling its RFP? If not, are we bound by it?

• Why not PPST?

Prompt: How have you been impacted by the current process?

• Allison- Bachelor’s from Idaho, has licensure there in Elementary Ed

o Spanish is her first language, couldn’t pass reading test

o w/out work or license for a year- passed on 3rd try

o Transition from Praxis was rough

o Must pass content and pedagogy tests by end of the year

• Wasn’t re-hired by most recent school due to licensure status

o Lost in cracks between PPST and MTLE

o Costs are very high

o Found a school where she can teach for one year

o Needs to pass writing test within 1 year

o Assessment systems are not in line with all learning styles

o She and her husband can’t buy a house because of the financial insecurity of her position

• Time limit is a barrier

o No feedback

o Only once a month testing is unreasonable

o Anxiety is high, testing centers are inflexible

o MLTE helpline is in Massachusetts

o Assess teachers, but don’t test

• We’re talking about two populations: newly graduated MN students and incoming teachers from

• out of state

• Legislature should take the test!

• Website navigation is atrocious

o Colleges required to remediate, but don’t know how

o Tried colleague to colleague tutoring for remediation as a last resort

o Remediation programs don’t know what the target is

• Remediators are grasping at straws, trying to find ways to effectively remediate

o Confidence-building is how she remediates now

• Has colleagues who left the state because of testing

Prompt: What is your recommendation for reform?

• Go back to PPST

o Continue forward with EdTPA

• MACTE’s position: if we can’t remove the test, find alternative means of assessment

o We must know what is measured- more transparency from Pearson is required

o Ideally, internally control testing through teacher prep programs

• Course requirements in prep programs should qualify teachers for licensure

• Different forms of assessment

o Change the test

o No time limits on test

o No waiting/shorter waiting period between tests

• More than one version of the test

• Give feedback

o Make study material available and affordable

o Alternative assessments for content and pedagogy

• Re-look at the cut score, if we must take the MTLE

• Must have a different test that is outcome-based

• Lowering the cut score lets Pearson off the hook

o Find an alternative assessment that is correlative to effective teaching

• Pearson is at the heart of this, regarding reliability, validity, etc.

o Get Pearson up to standard or eliminate them

o Pearson has a stake in failing candidates- they are a for-profit company

o All teachers/candidates- We would pay more money to take an untimed test

• Accept certain scores from out-of-state tests

o MN teachers in pre-service are fine

• Teaching programs have been invaluable

o Combine internal processes with the EdTPA

o EdTPA as a high-stakes test would be fine, because it matches

• On replacement, EdTPA for MTLE are two different types of tests

o EdTPA is not a licensure test. Not designed for that

• MTLE is unnecessary

• ACT could work to replace MTLE for out-of-staters

• Must be more options for testing

o What is blocking legislative action?

• Going back on what Leg. Just passed is blocking action

o Looks like we’re watering down standards

• Changing cut score would be easy

• MN teacher input to Pearson was rapid-fire, rushed, and not ultimately considered

• Revise statute for BOT to require and “assessment” instead of a “test”