National Board Launches Teacher-Led Advocacy and Awareness Efforts in Mississippi to Build an Accomplished and Diverse Teacher Workforce

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards announced today that it has recently been awarded a grant from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation totaling $700,000 over two years. The National Board’s focus with the grant resources is to accelerate Mississippi’s trajectory towards becoming a national model for Board-certified teachers. 

Like many states, Mississippi struggles with teacher shortages, which negatively impact the quality of student learning. At the same time, teachers of color make up less than one-third of the teacher workforce in the state, compounding inequities for students of color, which make up more than 55% of Mississippi students. Finally, many teachers struggle to access support for their teaching to improve their practice, to continue to grow professionally, and to have the resources they need to stay in the profession. 

“I am excited to continue partnering with the National Board to increase the number of Board-certified teachers in Mississippi. Now more than ever, our children need the support of accomplished educators,” said Governor Tate Reeves. “My goal is to bring Mississippi to the highest percentage of Board-certified teachers in the nation. Mississippi’s Board-certified teachers are an important part of our education strategy to continue elevating outcomes for every Mississippi child. This $700,000 grant will help us to leverage the strong support system we have in place, assuring that every Mississippi educator has the opportunity to become Board-certified and bring the research-proven advantages to their classroom and community.”

The National Board will partner with local and state education agencies and Mississippi National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs) in order to:

  • Strengthen policy conditions through teacher advocacy and state and local legislative support for National Board Certification
  • Drive broad awareness through a statewide teacher-led campaign to significantly expand the number of NBCTs, targeting high needs communities and early career teachers.

“The National Board’s vision is to improve teaching and learning in Mississippi by increasing the number of NBCTs, especially the number of NBCTs of color, and ensuring equity by targeting early career teachers and high-need areas across the state where currently no NBCTs exist,” said Peggy Brookins, NBCT, President and CEO of the National Board. “The twin activities of teacher-led advocacy and teacher-led awareness build from the National Board’s experience on how to rapidly grow the number of NBCTs. By growing the number of NBCTs, especially in the places that need accomplished teachers the most, more of Mississippi’s students will learn from Board-certified teachers throughout their education.”

The National Board partners with the more than 125,000 NBCTs to provide ongoing support for teachers to strengthen their professional careers and to impact the learning and lives of millions of students across the country. National Board Certification is offered in 25 certificate areas covering 16 different subjects.