In many US public schools, race and socioeconomic status still determine the quality of a student’s educational experience. Unqualified and inexperienced teachers are disproportionately concentrated in schools with the highest number of low-income students and students of color. If state, district, and local education leaders are serious about upholding America’s core value of equal opportunity, they must ensure that every student, regardless of race or family income, is taught by qualified and experienced teachers, particularly in core subjects.
In “Will New Teacher Equity Plans Get Closer to the Mark?,” NASBE Director of School Discipline and Equity Kimberly D. Charis urges state, district, and local leaders to “get serious about upholding America’s core value of equal opportunity” by ensuring the all students have equal access to qualified and experienced teachers. The US Department of Education issued new guidance in 2014 requiring states to devise plans by June 1 for how states will ensure all their students have equitable access to excellent educators. Charis reviews what state teacher equity plans are to include and makes recommendations for how state boards of education can ensure successful implementation.