NC Leads Nation in National Board Certified Teachers; Eight Universities Make Top 50 in Alumni Achieving First-Time Certification

Leading the nation in the number of National Board Certified Teachers is a trend worth boasting about, and it’s one that continues in 2012 as the state congratulates 636 newly-certified National Board teachers. This newest batch of credentialed teachers brings the state’s total number of National Board Certified Teachers to 19,799 – making North Carolina home to the largest number of National Board Certified teachers in the country.

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) this morning released the latest numbers for states and the nation. Over 20 percent of North Carolina’s educators are National Board certified. Most are still teaching in the classroom but others with certification have moved into administrative roles, are teaching at the university level or have retired.

State Superintendent June Atkinson commended the newly-certified teachers and thanked them for their dedication to achieving this certification. “It takes a deep professional and personal commitment to pursue National Board Certification, and even more so now that teachers have to absorb the certification cost. Public schools and the teaching profession in general benefit from these educators’ commitment to educational excellence, whether they are in the classroom or in administrative roles.”

Nationwide, 4,980 teachers and counselors received National Board Certification, bringing the national total to 102,237. North Carolina accounts for almost 20 percent of the nation’s National Board Certified Teachers. Florida is the next closest state with 13,634 followed by South Carolina (8,435), Washington (6,739) and California (5,636).

In addition, five North Carolina public school districts again placed in the Top 20 districts nationally for the total number of National Board Certified Teachers: Wake County Schools remained first with 2,299, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is third again with 1,897, Guilford County Schools moved up to ninth with 755, Winston-Salem/Forsyth Schools stayed in 16th with 527, and Buncombe County Schools moved to 17th with 489.

Along with the release of the number of newly-certified National Board teachers, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards again released the Top 50 public and private universities and colleges with the highest number of alumni who are newly-certified National Board teachers (based on self-reported candidate data). Eight North Carolina universities made the Top 50: Appalachian State University was 8th with 49, East Carolina University was 10th with 44, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill was 11th with 43, the University of North Carolina-Greensboro and the University of North Carolina-Wilmington were tied at 22nd with 29, North Carolina State University was 26th with 27, Western Carolina University was tied for 36th with 22, and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte was tied for 45th with 20.

Atkinson was pleased to see so many North Carolina universities in the Top 50 list saying, “North Carolina education graduates know what it takes to ensure their students succeed in the classroom and in life and are committed to ensuring they have the skills to help students accomplish their goals.”

North Carolina teachers have pursued National Board Certification since 1994. Teachers who achieve certification receive a salary supplement on top of their regular pay that is good for the 10-year life of the certification. They also are awarded 15 continuing education credits (CEUs).

North Carolina supports teachers pursuing National Board Certification by providing low-interest loans to pay the $2,500 assessment fee and three paid release days from normal teacher responsibilities to develop their portfolios. Also, the State Board of Education awards a North Carolina teaching license to out-of-state teachers who are employed in North Carolina and who possess National Board Certification.

National Board Certification is the highest credential in the teaching profession and participation is voluntary. Teachers achieve certification through a rigorous performance-based assessment that typically takes from one to three years to complete and measures what accomplished teachers and counselors should know and be able to do. As a part of the process, candidates build a portfolio that includes student work samples, assignments, videotapes and a thorough analysis of their classroom teaching. Certification is currently available to educators in 25 fields.

For additional information please visit the National Board Certification website.