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SD Department of Education May 2015  

  CTL discusses group mission and teacher certification

The Commission on Teaching and Learning met April 24-25 in Pierre. This group is composed of teachers, administrators and higher education representatives from across the state. With work on educator effectiveness handbooks coming to a close, a subcommittee met to discuss the mission, vision and structure of the group moving forward. Discussion on these topics will continue at the group’s next meeting.

“When the CTL began, we worked so tirelessly on the educator effectiveness system that we hadn't had the opportunity to really define who we were. The collaboration that took place among all the different stakeholders in that process was really the first of its kind,” said Jared Baumann, a teacher at Patrick Henry Middle School in Sioux Falls. “We felt like it was time to step back and define the mission and vision that will guide the CTL in the future and also establish a structure that will maintain the integrity of this group. My hope is the CTL will continue advancing excellence in teaching and learning for South Dakota students for years to come.”

The group also continued examining South Dakota’s teacher certification requirements by reviewing categories of certification: K-8, K-12, high school (9-12), PK-3 and “other.” The group reviewed various items, including required Praxis tests, noting apparent inconsistencies, requirements that seem too cumbersome, or conversely, requirements that do not seem sufficiently rigorous. Members also made recommendations for additional or different requirements or groupings. This work will form the basis for next steps in the process.

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