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14 More ACPS Teachers Earn National Board Certification - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

14 More ACPS Teachers Earn National Board Certification

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Albemarle County Public Schools Press Release

(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia) – Fourteen Albemarle County Public Schools teachers have earned certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, successfully completing a rigorous, year-long process for demonstrating classroom excellence.

The National Board was established in 1987 to advance student learning and achievement through a system for certifying educators. It describes its program as "setting high standards for entry and advancement in the profession and recognizing accomplished teaching through a professional certification process comparable to those found in other premier professions such as medicine, engineering and law."

Across the country, only three percent of more than 100,000 teachers are board certified, and in Virginia, approximately 1,200 teachers, or two percent, are certified. Albemarle County Public Schools, with 39 certified teachers, is among the top school divisions in the state, and its percentage of certified teachers exceeds both the national and state averages.

"Studies long have demonstrated that the teacher in the classroom is the single most effective and positive influence upon a student's academic achievement, so we are both proud of these professional educators and pleased with the added capabilities they bring to our students," said Dr. Billy Haun, Assistant Superintendent for Student Learning.

"National board certification provides an evidence-based process for teachers to develop their expertise and to measure their classroom impact. In today's increasingly competitive environment, students need to have cutting edge skills and competencies that will position them for success in college and throughout their careers," Haun said.

Teachers can earn certification at all grade levels, from Pre-K through grade 12, and in all subject disciplines. Applicants are required to provide videos of their classroom technique; a detailed analysis of their teaching method; and examples of student scholarship to document their accomplishments as leaders, continual learners, and communicators. Also, they are required to pass an exam in their area of concentration. Nationwide, fewer than 40 percent of teachers earn certification on their first attempt. In Albemarle, nearly 70 percent of first-time applicants succeed.

The newest Albemarle County teachers to be nationally certified include Terry Graff from Cale Elementary; Catherine Gray, Fatima Parker, Julie Stavitski, and Melissa Taylor from Jouett Middle; Stephanie Helvin and John Visel from Stone-Robinson Elementary; Albemarle High's Leilani Keys and Lisa Killham; Carrie Mersch and Elizabeth Sweatman from Henley Middle; Laura Richardson of Murray Elementary; Broadus Wood Elementary's Melissa Techman; and Tres Wells from Stony Point Elementary.

"Nationally certified teachers make it possible for us to better prepare students for global success, eliminate the opportunity gap, share best practices across the division, and develop a world class education system," Haun added.

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