- Ball to House Panel: U.S. Needs Better Teaching Practice Standards
On May 4, Deborah Ball testified before the U.S. House Committee on Education and Labor, outlining the need for reform to supply every U.S. classroom with an effective teacher. Ball described the current state of affairs in this country as "unethical": The students with the greatest need for highly skilled teachers are least likely to get them, and the lack of a coherent nation-wide teacher preparation system places many beginning teachers in classrooms still ill-prepared to practice their profession.
Ball recommended a rigorous, standards-based teacher training system to develop and assess candidates' specific content knowledge and classroom instructional skills. Teachers' ability would be measured by specific nation-wide standards and candidates would need to fulfill the requirements of a professionally validated licensure system before being placed in a classroom. Assessments and targeted feedback would be key components of the system for teacher training as well as teacher induction.
Ball's testimony before the panel was part of the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), known as No Child Left Behind.
watch Ball's testimony (video stream) »
download Ball's comments (PDF)
read Ball's responses to followup questions from the House Committee (PDF)
go to the U-M Record Update website to read more »
go to C-SPAN's website to hear the full Committee meeting, including the Q&A »