In a previous post, I described a scenario in which an administrator clearly did not understand the impact on student learning a teacher must demonstrate to renew National Board Certification. If you’re wondering, too, read on. And if you’re a renewal candidate, here are the files you’ve been looking for.
I’ve answered more than 100 emails this past week, asking for renewal help. As I write, there are almost 30o hits to this blog from searches for national board renewal help – just in the last month. As a result, I’ve decided to post a few items from the Renewal workshops I facilitate and a rationale for renewing.
My philosophy of a workshop emphasizes work. Teachers in attendance are accomplished, busy, and I will not waste their time. Renewal candidates can expect to spend the bulk of the 8-hour time working on their Profile of Professional Growth. Most leave with Component 1 roughed out, at least 1 PGE drafted, and a plan for the remaining 3 components.
First of all, you’re renewing your certificate, not recertifying. Recertification is what you must do should you allow your certificate to lapse, and it involves doing the entire initial certification process, again.
Here’s a graphic overview of the renewal process:
Professional Growth Experience (PGE)
You are already an accomplished teacher, or you would not have certified 8-9 years ago. You now will demonstrate that you are still learning and growing in your profession in a way that directly or indirectly impact student learning. You now must show sufficient professional growth. Sufficient. From the PPG directions, here is a description of sufficient professional growth:
- The renewal candidate has provided sufficient evidence of the identification of important needs in his or her professional context and of professional growth in areas that address those needs in a variety of rich and powerful contexts, including areas of content and/or pedagogical knowledge; and provides sufficient evidence of the application of professional growth in ways that have a meaningful impact on student learning.
- The renewal candidate has provided sufficient evidence of the acquisition of knowledge of current technology and/or effective and appropriate incorporation of technology into teaching and learning and draws on and/or contributed to the resources of the school, district, parents, and/or community.
- The candidate has provided evidence of teaching practice in his or her certificate-specific area in ways that recognize the needs of students, ensures equity of access and promotes appreciation of diversity, and provides relevant and meaningful instruction for students.
- •The renewal candidate provides evidence of professional growth that has evolved since certification and is varied and/or multifaceted. Although there may be unevenness in the level of evidence of professional growth presented, overall, there is sufficient evidence of professional growth since certification to support renewal of certification.
Many candidates have found using a chart an efficient way to organize their contributions to learners using a chart and post-it notes. You might want to start by writing down every professional activity you’ve ever done on a post-it, considering why you did each one (AKA the need), and grouping the activities according to the whys, or needs, you identified. Once you’ve got a pile of lists, and this will take awhile. NBCT is another name for overachiever. You’ll have way more post-its than you’ll be able to write about. That’s okay. You can pare this down later.
Once you’ve grouped the activities by the needs they met, you’ll use a set of criteria from the Renewed rubric to write. The charts, below, along with the prompts in your PPG directions, will guide your writing.
As with your initial certification, emphasis is on showing impact on student learning. This is the part that is clearly ignored by those wanting to use student test scores alone to evaluate teachers. To earn National Board Certification, you must show not only that your students learn, but that you know your students, how to help them set appropriate and meaningful learning goals, how to help them reflect on their learning as you reflect on the same, and how to help them set new, higher goals. Anyway, this time impact on student learning is both direct (Component 2; your work in a classroom) and indirect, through your leadership and contributions to the teaching profession.
Read the portfolio directions carefully. A few mistakes will probably make your PPG unscorable. Be absolutely sure that you appear in the Component 2 video. And be sure that the class you teach is from your initial certification area and age group.
Now, go strut your stuff. Renew. You don’t want to have to say ‘I used to be a National Board Certified Teacher.”