Teacher Effectiveness Matters Most. During the past 20 years, research has confirmed that a teacher’s effectiveness is the single most important school-related factor associated with a student’s success. We now know that a student who has an effective teacher benefits significantly, and that a student who is taught by a series of ineffective teachers is unlikely to recover academically. While out-of-school factors continue to predominantly influence student achievement, of those factors within a school, the effectiveness of a teacher is the most significant.
State Legislative Role. State legislators often seek the most effective policies to improve teaching and, ultimately, student achievement. They regularly consider legislation that addresses the various stages of the career continuum—recruitment, preparation, licensure, induction, mentoring, ongoing professional learning, compensation, continuing licensure, tenure and evaluation—and struggle to consider teacher policy as a whole. The pace of reform and the introduction of new policies recently have quickened, even as many states face budget constraints and work to implement new Common Core State Standards and new assessments. Legislators are working to ensure that their efforts to improve educator effectiveness coincide with other reforms and that state funds are being spent to maximize student achievement with little or no new investment.
Legislative Tracking. NCSL tracks all enactments related to teacher effectiveness. Visit our database for more summaries of this legislation. More