ARLINGTON, Va. — December 14, 2016 —The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards has released a revised What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do, part of the teaching profession’s core body of knowledge. The book, which explicates the Five Core Propositions for teaching, is similar to medicine’s Hippocratic Oath, held in common by all teachers of all grade levels and disciplines and underscoring the accomplished teacher’s commitment to advancing student learning and achievement.
“What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do is a foundational document that articulates what it means, in concrete terms, to teach to high standards with attention to the needs of all students. It is important and relevant, not only for aspiring and practicing teachers, but also for school leaders and policy makers who need to know what great teaching looks like and what it is built upon. Professional collaboration around these ideals challenges teachers to be their best and encourages them to remain in the classroom, advancing the profession. For anybody working to advance student learning and teaching quality in America’s schools, this book should be required reading,” said Linda Darling-Hammond, President of the Learning Policy Institute and Professor Emeritus at Stanford University.
With input from more than 700 educators, a team of National Board Certified Teachers led the revision of What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do. A distinguishing feature of any profession is that practitioners in the field define accomplished practice – in this case, what teachers should know and be able to do. For this reason, how these revisions took place is as important as the revisions themselves. In content and in authorship, the Five Core Propositions are a statement of what the teaching profession stands for.
The revision includes a preface written by Stanford Graduate School of Education Emeritus Professor Lee Shulman. In it, he says, “The standards for accomplished teaching encompass both the habits of mind needed by outstanding teachers—their knowledge, strategies, grasp of subject matter and understanding of developing kids—and also their skills, the technical ‘habits of practice’ that accomplished professionals in every field of practice have honed and developed. Knowing and Doing are the hallmarks of deep professional achievement.”
Release of the revised book coincides with #TeamNBCT week during which the National Board celebrates 533 new and 3,384 renewed National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs) along with more than 20,000 teachers currently pursuing Board certification – seen as the profession’s mark of accomplished practice. There are more than 112,000 NBCTs in the United States.