October 2017 Issue - New York State Certification
October 24, 2017

Regents phase in new passing score on edTPA exam

Author: By Sylvia Saunders
Source: NYSUT United

Following the recommendations of a panel of education experts, the Regents approved a phase-in of a revised passing score on the problematic edTPA teacher certification exam.

Responding to complaints from the union and the field, the State Education Department convened a standards setting panel in June to review the edTPA passing score.

The Regents approved the recommended phase-in, which drops the passing score from 41 to 38 for 15-rubric edTPA handbooks starting in January 2018. The state will then slowly raise that mark until it reaches 40 in 2022.

The edTPA requires aspiring teachers to submit a portfolio of work, including a video of themselves teaching. Even with the newly lowered score, the passing mark in New York will still be among the highest in the country.

Jamie Dangler, vice president for academics at United University Professions, representing SUNY faculty and academic staff, said the score change is only fair since there are concerns about the way the edTPA is scored. Pearson hires scorers from a national pool and has not disclosed information about who is scoring NYS exams.

"Establishing such high passing scores when there are real problems with the assessment itself was a disservice to our teacher candidates," she said.

The Regents also adopted a multiple measures review process so students who fail the edTPA within two points of the new passing score can be reviewed for certfication based on other measures of their readiness to teach.

SED Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said the actions "strike the right balance by providing fairness to those seeking to become teachers, while maintaining some of the most rigorous certification requirements in the country."