Public Advocates Inc. is a nonprofit law firm and advocacy organization that challenges the systemic causes of poverty and racial discrimination. They have been very active in ensuring that teachers in training should not be designated as “highly qualified”. This misleading practice has allowed ill-trained and inexperienced teachers, including TFA recruits, to be concentrated in high-needs classrooms. This is an urgent issue that congress must not let continue. From Public Advocates: “This month, Congress will vote on a Continuing Resolution budget bill expected to include a harmful education amendment. The “HQT Amendment” would make permanent the federal government’s practice of labeling teachers-in-training “highly qualified” even if they have minimal preparation.” “Let Congress know our highest-need students deserve better! Join with more than 90 disability, civil rights, parent, principal, grassroots, rural and education advocacy groups to demand that the federal government end this morally wrong practice. ” Read how you can help here.
Update on 10/17/2013: Disappointingly, congress slipped in language in the shutdown budget deal to allow teachers in training (mainly TFA) to be considered “highly qualified” for another two years. Check out http://ht.ly/pTnP4 for more details.