Kansas Teachers Achieve Certification – Again

November 26, 2013

One hundred percent of the Kansas educators mentored through a program at Emporia State University in 2012-13 achieved the highest honor of the teaching profession, each for a second time.

The 15 teachers were notified in late October/early November that the work they had done had – once again – measured up. The teachers are:

Blue Valley, USD 229 –

  • Jody Drake, Mission Trail Elementary School, first grade teacher; certificate area: early childhood/generalist
  • Valerie Golden, Overland Trail Middle School, eighth grade English language arts & reading teacher; certificate area: adolescence and young adulthood/English language arts
  • Eric Kessler, Center for Advanced Professional Studies, bioscience instructor; certificate area:  adolescence and young adulthood/science
  • Pat Mairs, Harmony Middle School, sixth and eighth grade social studies teacher; certificate area: early adolescence/social studies, history

Buhler, USD 313 – Sheryl Smith, Buhler High School, art teacher; certificate area: early adolescence and young adulthood/art

Dodge City, USD 443 – Melody Head, Dodge City High School, business educator; certificate area: early adolescence and young adulthood/ career and technical education

Maize, USD 266 – Angela Stockam, Maize South High School, chemistry teacher; certificate area: adolescence and young adulthood/science

Manhattan-Ogden, USD 383 –

  • Chris George, Manhattan High School, physics teacher; certificate area: adolescence and young adulthood/science
  • Pat Lamb, Manhattan High School, biology teacher; certificate area: adolescence and young adulthood/science 

Meade, USD 226 – Stacy Cordes, Meade Junior High School, science/technology/engineering/mathematics instructor; certificate area: early adolescence/science 

Olathe, USD 233 –

  • JoAnn Hiatt, Olathe East High School, mathematics teacher; certificate area: adolescence and young adulthood/science
  • Denine Larson, Fairview Elementary School, Title I reading teacher; certificate area: early and middle childhood/literacy/reading-language arts
  • Beth Pope, Bentwood Elementary School, fourth grade teacher; certificate area: middle childhood/generalist

Salina, USD 305 – Mary Harmon, Schilling Elementary School, library media specialist; certificate area: early childhood through young adulthood/library media

Seaman, USD 345 – Debbie Stewart, Logan Elementary School, second grade teacher; certificate area: early and middle childhood / literacy/reading-language arts 

“This process of board certification is similar to how a doctor becomes certified in a special area,” said Dr. Roger Caswell, who assisted these teachers in their process to renew their NBCT status. “This is voluntary – no state, school district, or program is demanding them to go through this process. That’s why – a decade after earning their certification the first time – it’s a huge commitment to say, ‘Yes, I want to do it again.’”

The process is often misunderstood to mean a teacher passed a test or was nominated for the award. Alvin Peters, the director of the program that guides teachers through working towards becoming NBCTS, adds, “National Board certification is a different kind of honor. Teachers must submit extensive documentation of their instruction, including videos of their students at work in the classroom.”

ESU’s Great Plains Center for National Teacher Certification maintains a 100 percent renewal rate with candidates achieving recertification on their first attempt. This is the ninth consecutive year the center’s renewal rate has reached 100 percent. More information about ESU’s program can be found at www.emporia.edu/jones/nbpts/.                                                                    

Kansas currently has a total of 368 national board certified teachers. Nationwide, the total number of national board certified teachers is more than 102,000.

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