November 15, 2012

Kansas Teachers Achieve Certification – Again

One hundred percent of the Kansas educators mentored through a program at Emporia State University in 2011-12 achieved the highest honor of the teaching profession, each for a second time.

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

Blue Valley, USD 229 –

  • Ronda Hassig, Harmony Middle School, library media specialist, certificate area: library media/early childhood through young adulthood
  • Teresa Hogan, Blue Valley Northwest High School, algebra teacher, certificate area: mathematics/early adolescence
  • Ann Schuster, Valley Park Elementary School, library media specialist, certificate area: library media/early childhood through young adulthood
  • Rebecca Stith Munson, Blue Valley District Office, education technology specialist, certificate area: library media/early childhood through young adulthood

Geary County, USD 475 – Clifford “Kip” French, Junction City High School, certificate area: mathematics/adolescence and young adulthood

Meade, USD 226 – Ethel Reimer, Meade Elementary, certificate area: middle school/generalist

Oakley, USD 274 – Jerrilee Shuman, Oakley Elementary, certificate area: early and middle childhood/music

Shawnee Mission, USD 512 – Karen Tritt, Shawnee Mission West high School, early adolescence and young adulthood/world languages other than English

Silver Lake, USD 372 – Jamie Manhart, Silver Lake Junior/Senior High School, early adolescence and young adulthood/career and technical education

Wamego, USD 320 – Dr. Lori Goodson, Wamego High School, early adolescence/English language arts

“This process of board certification is similar to how a doctor becomes certified in a special area,” said Dr. Roger Caswell, former director of Emporia State University’s program which assists teachers working toward national certification. “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 current director of the program, 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% renewal rate with candidates achieving recertification on their first attempt. This is the eighth consecutive year the center’s renewal rate has reached 100%. More information about ESU’s program can be found at

Kansas currently has a total of 355 national board certified teachers. Nationwide, the total number of national board certified teachers is more than 97,000.


Is your teacher board certified?

They are among the best teachers in the profession, undergoing a rigorous process taking at least one year.

They are told to expect a 400-hour time commitment, and less than half will achieve certification on their first try.

NBCTs represent less than one percent of all educators in Kansas. The voluntary process is the equivalent of national board certification for physicians and other health professions.

Some 355 teachers in Kansas are NBCTs, with many teaching in larger school districts. 

To see a list of NBCTs, go to

Kansas is 36th in the nation in total number of NBCTs.

By late November teachers who worked toward their initial certification during the 2011-12 school year will find out if they achieved National Board Certification.