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Report: Maryland Teacher Recertification process should be reformed

May 29th, 2021 by WCBC Radio

Maryland spends up to $1 billion on teacher professional development every year, but there is little to no data showing that teachers improve in classrooms from such programs, according to a recent report.

WTOP reports public school teachers in Maryland must renew their teaching license every five years, which involves three years of annual satisfactory evaluations and a certain number of hours of state-approved professional development opportunities and courses at colleges and universities.

But the effectiveness of teacher recertification requirements is ambiguous, according to Abell Foundation’s “Reconsidering Teacher Recertification in Maryland” report. And because of how many public dollars are invested in teacher licensure and professional development, it is important to ensure that these efforts are meaningful. A “Continuing Professional Development” (CPD) credit, which can include courses, workshops, conferences or peer coaching, costs between $30 to $249 per hour, according to the report. This year, Baltimore City Public Schools allocated $2.1 million for tuition reimbursement, according to its budget.

The 2019 Commission on Innovation and Excellence interim report found that Maryland local school districts directly spend $52.8 million annually on professional development, only some of which count towards teacher certification.