A National “Best Kept Secret”: Delaware’s Teacher Training Legislation

September 19th, 2013

Category: News, Policy and Practice

2013 PIE Policy Summit Eddie award- Paul on stage

I’m on stage speaking about Delaware’s efforts to improve teacher training.

Last night, we were honored to accept an award given to Delaware for its effort to improve the quality of teacher training in the state. The Best Kept Secret award, which recognizes a “big gain that didn’t get big press,” was one of five awards presented during the 2013 PIE Network Policy Summit held in Boston. PIE (Policy Innovators in Education) supports and promotes a network of education advocacy organizations (of which we are a member) working to improve K-12 education in their states.

We are proud to accept the award, yet even prouder of the collective work to strengthen teacher training in the state. In June of this year, Governor Markell signed into law SB 51, which, for the first-time, established standards for teacher training programs at higher education institutions in the state. The law is an outstanding collective achievement for Delaware education stakeholders; SB 51 is seen as one of the strongest pieces of teacher training legislation in the nation. Over the last several years, we, at Rodel, have been providing research support, and trying to elevate the discussion through conversations with leaders locally, nationally, and even internationally via trips to Finland and Singapore, so we are very excited about this work.

Rodel Foundation President & CEO, Paul Herdman; Rodel Foundation Senior Director of Partnerships Sarah Grunewald; and Delaware Business Roundtable Education Committee Executive Director Robert Ford accept the award on Delaware's behalf

Sarah Grunewald, our Senior Director of Partnerships; Robert Ford, Director of Corporate Engagement for the Delaware Business Roundtable Education Committee (on the right), and I accept the award on Delaware’s behalf.

The award last night is one of a series of indicators that suggest that Delaware is among the leading states on this issue nationally. In addition to raising entry standards and improving teacher training, the law also focuses on reporting on the effectiveness of its graduates during and after their training.

By taking a closer look at what’s working even before teachers enter the classroom, Delaware has an opportunity to do more of what’s working and less of what’s not. And more importantly, as the state continues to ratchet up the preparation of each subsequent generation of teachers, we are positively impacting the lives of thousands of our children.

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Paul Herdman




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