Three teachers at Frederick County Public Schools recently brought the number of FCPS educators who have achieved rigorous certification requirements established by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) to 70. To earn national board certification, they were required to demonstrate their knowledge and skills through an extensive year-long series of performance-based assessments, which included preparation of teaching portfolios and videotapes, submission of student work samples, and analyses of their classroom teaching and student learning. They also completed a series of written exercises that probed the depth of their subject-matter knowledge and their understanding of how to teach those subjects to their students.
Achieving National Board Certification in December 2019 and Board of Education recognition last week were Tuscarora High School science teacher Patricia Crowell in Adolescence and Young Adulthood – Biology, Ballenger Creek Elementary music teacher Michele De La Rosa in Early and Middle Childhood – Band, and Tuscarora High School science teacher Kevin Hall in Adolescence and Young Adulthood – Biology.
“Highly qualified teachers are the cornerstones of a successful school system,” said Dr. Terry Alban, FCPS Superintendent. “Congratulations to our new cadre of National Board certified teachers. Your passion to be lifelong learners will have a life-changing impact on our students.”
Asserting that the single most important action the nation can take to improve student performance is to strengthen teaching, the NBPTS set out in 1987 to identify the knowledge and skills that characterize accomplished teachers. The process of achieving national certification, requiring intense self-reflection and analysis of one’s practice, has proven to be a terrific professional development experience, according to the NBPTS.
Many states and school districts encourage their teachers to seek national certification. Several, including Maryland, help to pay the fee for course work and assessments for national certification. FCPS offers financial assistance to teachers seeking certification and pays teachers who hold NBPTS certification $2,000 per year more than their non-NBPTS-certified peers during the five-year span of each national certificate.
At its February 12, 2020 meeting, the BOE honored the three teachers earning National Board for Professional Teaching Standards certification in December 2019. Left to right in the front row are the teachers--Kevin Hall, Michele De La Rosa and Patricia Crowell. In the back row are FCPS Deputy Superintendent Dr. Michael Markoe, student member of the Board of Education Malachi Macon, BOE members Rae Gallagher, Michael Bunitsky, Brad W. Young (president), Jay Mason (vice president), Liz Barrett and Karen A. Yoho.