ALBANY, N.Y. January 29, 2014 – New York State United Teachers today celebrated the naming of 136 teachers, including a large cluster from the Hudson Valley, who earned the profession's "gold standard" - certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
The 136 teachers who conquered the rigorous, voluntary national certification process brings the number of New York teachers who have earned the most prestigious credential in teaching to 1,602.
NYSUT honored the state's new class of nationally certified teachers at a 10:30 a.m. news conference at Arlington High School. Arlington, with nine new nationally certified teachers, ranks third in New York state with 62 NBPTS-certified teachers, Wappingers, where six teachers attained national certification, ranks fifth with 46. Poughkeepsie added three new nationally certified teachers.
"In a state widely recognized for its teaching excellence, these 136 teachers stand out," said NYSUT President Richard C. Iannuzzi. "They voluntarily took on the challenge to prove they are among the 'best of the best' our profession has to offer and they excelled. Achieving National Board Certification is a tremendous honor. Their work benefits their communities, their colleagues, their schools and, most importantly, their students.
"Arlington is proud to support our teachers in attaining National Board Certification," added Arlington Superintendent Brendan Lyons. "The number of successful candidates in Arlington is a testament to our teachers' desire to be the best at what they do and sets a fine example of lifelong learning for their colleagues and students."
NYSUT Vice President Maria Neira, a former NBPTS board member, said the rigorous national certification process is a "meaningful way for teachers to reflect on their own classroom practices and use what they learn to help deliver more effective instruction to their students. It is a rich professional development experience that research shows is beneficial for students."
National certification is the highest credential a classroom teacher can earn. Candidates spend between 200-400 hours of their own time having their teaching measured against high and rigorous standards through an extensive series of performance-based assessments. These assessments include teaching portfolios, student work samples, videotapes or DVDs, and thorough analyses of the candidates' teaching and the students' learning. The process involves written exercises that probe the depth of candidates' subject-matter knowledge, as well as their understanding of how to teach those subjects.
NYSUT assists national board candidates by offering awareness programs, support and advice through online discussion forums, conferences and professional development through its Education & Learning Trust and provides funding for National Board Writing Institutes. The union works with teacher centers to support candidates through the challenging board-certification process. Many school districts support national certification by providing teacher-candidates with release time.
New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members. Members are pre-K-12 teachers; school-related professionals; higher education faculty; other professionals in education, human services and health care; and retirees. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.