The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

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May 14, 2009

Local teachers honored for national accreditation

Sixty-three West Virginia teachers were honored at a ceremony Wednesday evening at the Clay Center in Charleston for achieving National Board Certification, the teaching profession’s highest credential.

“National Board Certified teachers not only have to prove they know their subject matter, but they also must provide evidence they know how to effectively teach their subjects to students,” state schools Superintendent Steve Paine said.

“National Board Certified Teachers know how to bridge the gap between what students learn today and what they need to know to be successful in the 21st century. Teachers who receive the national certification are clearly among America’s best,” he said.

Members of state board of education and the several other distinguished guests honored the teachers for obtaining the prestigious credentials at Wednesday’s ceremony.

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Several local teachers were among the 63 honorees, including Fayette County teacher Linda Boley, Greenbrier County teacher Shannon Wykle and Raleigh County teachers Teresa Epperly and Sandra Shaw.

National Board Certification is a voluntary assessment program designed to recognize and reward teachers.

While state licensing systems set basic requirements to teach in each state, National Board Certified teachers have successfully demonstrated advanced teaching knowledge, skills and practices.

Certification is achieved through a rigorous, performance-based assessment that typically takes one to three years to complete.

Overall, the first-year achievement rate is about 40 percent, culminating in an achievement rate of approximately 65 percent by the end of the third year.

As part of the process, teachers build a portfolio that includes student work samples, assignments, videotapes and a thorough analysis of their classroom teaching. Additionally, teachers are assessed on their knowledge of the subjects they teach.

Across the country, more than 60,000 of some of the most effective teachers in the country, including about 420 in West Virginia, have demonstrated they meet the highest teaching standards by becoming National Board Certified.

— E-mail:

jayres@register-herald.com

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