Professional Standards Board

Statutory Authority: 14 Delaware Code, Section 1205(b) (14 Del.C. §1205(b))

14 DE Admin. Code 1597


Educational Impact Analysis Pursuant To 14 Del.C. Section 122(D)

1597 Delaware Professional Teaching Standards

A. Type of Regulatory Action Requested

Reauthorization of Existing Regulation

B. Synopsis of Subject Matter of Regulation

The Professional Standards Board, acting in cooperation and collaboration with the Department of Education, seeks the consent of the State Board of Education to reauthorize regulation 14 DE Admin. Code 1597 Delaware Professional Teaching Standards. It was fitting to review this regulation as it has been 5 years since the initial draft and inception of this regulation. Upon review it was felt that the standing regulation language is still appropriate and relevant. This regulation sets forth the criteria for Delaware Professional Teaching Standards.

Persons wishing to present their views regarding this matter may do so in writing by the close of business on Wednesday February 4, 2009 to Mr. Charlie Michels, Executive Director, Delaware Professional Standards Board, The Townsend Building, 401 Federal Street, Dover, Delaware 19901. Copies of this regulation are available from the above address or may be viewed at the Professional Standards Board Business Office.

C. Impact Criteria

1. Will the adopted regulation help improve student achievement as measured against state achievement standards? The adopted regulation addresses student achievement by establishing standards for the issuance of a standard certificate to educators who have acquired the prescribed knowledge, skill and/or education to practice in a particular area, to teach a particular subject or to instruct a particular category of students to help ensure that students are instructed by educators who are highly qualified.

2. Will the adopted regulation help ensure that all students receive an equitable education? The adopted regulation helps to ensure that all teachers employed to teach students meet high standards and have acquired the prescribed knowledge, skill and/or education to practice in a particular area, to teach a particular subject or to instruct a particular category of students.

3. Will the adopted regulation help to ensure that all students' health and safety are adequately protected? The adopted regulation addresses educator certification, not students’ health and safety.

4. Will the adopted regulation help to ensure that all students' legal rights are respected? The adopted regulation addresses educator certification, not students’ legal rights.

5. Will the adopted regulation preserve the necessary authority and flexibility of decision-makers at the local board and school level? The adopted regulation will preserve the necessary authority and flexibility of decision makers at the local board and school level.

6. Will the adopted regulation place unnecessary reporting or administrative requirements or mandates upon decision makers at the local board and school levels? The adopted regulation will not place unnecessary reporting or administrative requirements or mandates upon decision makers at the local board and school levels.

7. Will decision making authority and accountability for addressing the subject to be regulated be placed in the same entity? The decision-making authority and accountability for addressing the subject to be regulated rests with the Professional Standards Board, in collaboration with the Department of Education, and with the consent of the State Board of Education.

8. Will the adopted regulation be consistent with and not an impediment to the implementation of other state educational policies, in particular to state educational policies addressing achievement in the core academic subjects of mathematics, science, language arts and social studies? The adopted regulation will be consistent with, and not an impediment to, the implementation of other state educational policies, in particular to state educational policies addressing achievement in the core academic subjects of mathematics, science, language arts and social studies.

9. Is there a less burdensome method for addressing the purpose of the amended regulation? 14 Del.C. requires that we promulgate this regulation.

10. What is the cost to the state and to the local school boards of compliance with the adopted regulation? There is no additional cost to local school boards for compliance with the regulation.

1597 Delaware Professional Teaching Standards

1.0 Content

The Delaware Professional Teaching Standards establish a common set of knowledge, skills, and attributes expected of Delaware's teachers. In accordance with 14 Del.C. §1205, this regulation shall be applied to all teachers employed within the public schools and charter schools of the State of Delaware.

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

2.0 Definitions

The following words and terms, when used in this regulation, shall have the following meaning unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Alignment of Assessment" means the ability to determine what students know and are able to do with respect to the curriculum is dependent upon how well the assessment methods and tasks are aligned with, or in agreement with, the curriculum. Assessments should be aligned with the content of the curriculum, consistent with the instructional approaches, and address the range of topics as weighted in the curriculum.

"Authentic Experiences" means the use of performances, or "authentic activities", such as writing a letter, solving a real world mathematics problem, or investigating a question in science, as a way to teach and to assess student learning.

"Culturally or Linguistically Diverse" means students and families who come to schools with cultural and/or language backgrounds that differ from the predominant experience of monolingual English speakers. The term calls attention to the range of geographic background, cultural heritage, and level of English proficiency found among students in schools.

"Codes of Conduct" mean codes of conduct adopted by professional educational organizations that establish the ethical parameters that guide professional behavior. The codes range from general guides for teachers (NEA) to more specific guidelines for teachers of certain subject area.

"Communication Theory" means an understanding of the principles of communication theory (e.g., productive and receptive communication, cultural context of language, metacommunication) as they apply in practice in the classroom.

"Community" means the school community and includes teachers, administrators, students, parents, guardians and Relative Caregivers. However, the schools are a part of a larger community (i.e., neighborhood, town, city) that supports the school and the students will live.

"Disciplines" means academic disciplines which include the arts, humanities, languages, mathematics, and natural and social sciences that provide the basis of the subjects taught in schools.

"Discourse" means to both the writing and speaking in the classroom that teachers and students engage in as they seek ways to represent ideas, concepts and their thinking. It is the ways in which they discuss agree and disagree, and explore the discipline.

"Diverse Learners" means students are individuals who differ in the ways in which they learn. They have different learning styles, modalities, interests, talents and personalities, all of which affect the ways in which teachers design instruction.

"Domains" means the broad areas of human development, intellectual, social, emotional, and physical, that influence learning.

"Educational Technology" means the use of any technology (e.g., word processing, data retrieval, electronic mail) as a set of skills that can be learned and used to support learning in the classroom.

"Habits of Mind" mean mental habits influence what students do and how they learn. The development of habits of mind, like perseverance, confidence, a willingness to explore new ideas and experiment, seeking feedback from others, valuing accuracy and precision, avoiding impulsivity, are a part of the teaching and learning process.

"Health" means health issues that can affect learning range from cerebral palsy, Downs Syndrome, and other severe disabilities to less pronounced and not easily detected concerns such as diabetes or asthma or nutrition. An awareness of these conditions and how they affect learning furthers a teacher's ability to meet the needs of students.

"Instructional Technology" means the use of specific technologies that are integrated with content to enhance learning within the disciplines (e.g., graphing calculators in mathematics, accounting or tax software in business, editing software for writing).

"Learning Theory" means an understanding of the principles of learning theory (e.g., behaviorism, constructivism, transmission of knowledge) as they apply in practice in the classroom.

"Meaningful (to students)" means to convey a sense of purpose to students for their learning. The content takes on significance because of the connections that are made between the learning and students' lives. It helps students make sense out of what they are learning.

"Measurement Theory" means an understanding of the principles of measurement theory (e.g., validity, reliability, bias in testing, test construction, interpretation of tests) as they apply in practice in the classroom.

"Media Communication" means the use of technologies that document events (e.g., audiotape, videotape, electronic transfer of information through computer programs) as a means of communicating information.

"Methods (Process) of Inquiry" means the process through which students make new discoveries, extend their knowledge, or deepen their understandings of things they already know. Students need to be able to create, observe, compare, question, record and interpret data, evaluate and revise, search resources, and share information.

"Multicultural" means diverse cultural backgrounds of students and their families and school personnel, with an emphasis on their ethnicity, race, religion, gender, socio-economic status, and family structures. The term takes on importance in the development of teachers as they learn to recognize the importance of these factors in the education process.

"Multiple Assessments" means decisions about what students know and are able to do should be based on an analysis of information obtained from a variety of sources of evidence. Assessments should be conducted in a variety of formats (e.g., written and oral tests, observations, performances) and address the full range of content.

"Multiple Intelligences" means based on the writing of Howard Gardner, the identification of seven abilities (i.e., linguistic, logical, mathematical, spatial, musical, bodily kinesthetic, inter personal, intra personal) that describe distinct aspects of "intelligent."

"Nonverbal Communication" means communication through means other than the use of words (e.g., facial expressions, body position, action).

"Pedagogical Knowledge" means the knowledge of how to teach the knowledge of instructional methods.

"Performance" means carrying out or completing an activity or production which displays a student's knowledge and ability through demonstration.

"Performance Modes" means the range of ways in which students can demonstrate what they know and are able to do (e.g., writing, speaking, visual works, videotapes, enacting).

"Professional Growth" means the process in which teachers examine the relationship between what they and their students are doing and what their students are learning. This process involves self reflection and feedback from students and colleagues and an exploration of the findings from research, as well as the use of this information as the basis for improving personal practice in the future.

"Structures" means the structures of disciplines which provide the overall framework which both connects and transcends the skills and content of the discipline. The big picture or outline of the discipline helps students understand the commonalties and the interrelationships of concepts within a discipline. An understanding of the structure of a discipline allows students to see connections as they acquire new knowledge.

"Technology" means the use of the word technology is meant to encompass both educational and instructional technology within this document unless one of these terms is used specifically.

"Theory" means the knowledge of the principles and methods of a science (e.g., learning, measurement) as contrasted with its application.

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

3.0 Content Knowledge

The teacher understands the core concepts and structure(s) of the discipline(s) and their related content standards and creates learning experiences that make the content meaningful to students.

3.1 Knowledge Components

3.1.1 Understands major concepts, principles, and theories that are central to the discipline

3.1.2 Understands the dynamic and complex nature of the content of the discipline

3.1.3 Understands the processes of inquiry central to the discipline

3.1.4 Understands the relationship of knowledge within the discipline to other content areas and to life applications

3.2 Performance Indicators

3.2.1 Uses a variety of explanations and multiple representations of concepts to help develop conceptual understanding

3.2.2 Anticipates and adjusts for common misunderstandings that impede learning within the discipline

3.2.3 Engages students in generating and testing knowledge according to the processes of inquiry of the discipline

3.2.4 Creates learning experiences that make connections to other content areas and to life experiences

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

4.0 Human Development and Learning

The teacher understands how children develop and learn and provides learning opportunities that support the intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of each learner.

4.1 Knowledge Components

4.1.1 Understands learning theory, including how students construct knowledge, acquire skills, and develop habits of mind

4.1.2 Understands human development, including the ranges of individual variation within each domain

4.1.3 Understands the interaction between student development and learning

4.2 Performance Indicators

4.2.1 Chooses developmentally appropriate instructional strategies that promote student learning

4.2.2 Develops concepts and principles at different levels of complexity so that they are meaningful to students at varying levels of development

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

5.0 Diverse Learners

The teacher understands how students differ and adapts instruction for diverse learners.

5.1 Knowledge Components

5.1.1 Understands how student learning is influenced by individual experiences, talents, and prior learning, as well as language, culture, gender, health, family, and community

5.1.2 Understands differences in approaches to learning and performance, including learning styles, multiple intelligences, and performance modes

5.1.3 Understands cultural diversity and how to incorporate multicultural experiences into instruction

5.1.4 Understands areas of exceptionality in learning, including talented and gifted and special needs, and how to access strategies to accommodate individual differences

5.1.5 Understands the process of second language acquisition and how to access strategies to support learning for students whose first language is not English

5.1.6 Understands the needs of culturally or linguistically diverse students

5.1.7 Understands when and how to access appropriate resources or services to meet special learning needs

5.1.8 Understands the major principles and parameters of federal and state disability legislation and regulation.

5.2 Performance Indicators

5.2.1 Accepts and values all students

5.2.2 Treats all students equitably

5.2.3 Respects students as individuals with differing experiences, skills, talents, and interests

5.2.4 Uses cultural diversity and individual student experiences to enrich instruction

5.2.5 Designs instructional activities that address the range of student learning styles, multiple intelligences and performance modes

5.2.6 Makes appropriate provisions for individual students who have particular learning differences or needs

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

6.0 Communication

The teacher understands and uses effective communication.

6.1 Knowledge Components

6.1.1 Understands the general types of communication strategies and appropriate assistive technology that can be incorporated as a regular part of their instruction.

6.1.2 Understands effective oral, written, nonverbal, and media communication techniques

6.1.3 Understands the importance of audience and purpose when selecting ways to communicate ideas

6.1.4 Understands potential positive and negative effects of their verbal and non verbal messages on students with cultural, gender and ability differences.

6.2 Performance Indicators

6.2.1 Uses a variety of communication techniques

6.2.2 Communicates effectively with diverse populations

6.2.3 Models accurate and grammatically correct language

6.2.4 Creates opportunities for students to learn effective communication

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

7.0 Learning Environment

The teacher understands individual and group behavior and creates a learning environment that fosters active engagement, self motivation, and positive social interaction.

7.1 Knowledge Components

7.1.1 Understands principles of effective classroom management

7.1.2 understands factors that influence motivation and engagement and how to help students become self motivated

7.1.3 Understands individual behavior and how individuals behave in groups

7.1.4 Understands group dynamics and how groups function within a community

7.1.5 Understands how to help students learn to participate effectively in groups

7.2 Performance Indicators

7.2.1 Establishes and maintains a classroom environment with clear expectations and standards of behavior

7.2.2 Organizes, allocates, and manages time, materials, and physical space to support learning

7.2.3 Establishes classroom practices that promote a safe environment

7.2.4 Creates a learning community which respects individual differences

7.2.5 Establishes a classroom environment which promotes positive relationships, cooperation, and purposeful learning

7.2.6 Creates a classroom environment where student thoughts and ideas are a basis for exploring and developing understanding

7.2.7 Creates a learning community in which students work independently and collaboratively

7.2.8 Encourages students to assume responsibility for their own learning and behavior

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

8.0 Planning for Instruction

The teacher understands instructional planning and designs instruction based upon knowledge of the disciplines, students, the community, and Delaware's student content standards.

8.1 Knowledge Components

8.1.1 Understands how to incorporate learning theory, content, curriculum development, and assessment, and student development when planning

8.1.2 Understands that effective instructional planning includes the alignment of assessment and instruction prior to implementation

8.1.3 Understands how to develop short and long range plans consistent with curriculum goals, learner diversity, and learning theory

8.1.4 Understands how to make connections between student experiences and education goals

8.1.5 Understands how to maximize the participation and engagement of students with disabilities in a general or expanded curriculum.

8.2 Performance Indicators

8.2.1 Evaluates teaching resources and materials for accuracy and usefulness

8.2.2 Applies principles of scope and sequence when planning instruction

8.2.3 Creates approaches to learning that are interdisciplinary and that integrate multiple content areas

8.2.4 Creates and selects learning materials and learning experiences appropriate for the discipline and curriculum goals

8.2.5 Uses student prior knowledge and principles of effective instruction to plan learning activities relevant to students

8.2.6 Incorporates authentic experiences into instructional planning

8.2.7 Creates multiple learning activities that allow for student choice

8.2.8 Establishes and communicates expectations for student learning

8.2.9 Creates and adapts short and long range plans to achieve the expectations for student learning

8.2.10 Incorporates assessment components into instructional planning

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

9.0 Instructional Strategies

The teacher understands a variety of instructional approaches and uses them to promote student thinking, understanding, and application of knowledge.

9.1 Knowledge Components

9.1.1 Understands principles and techniques of a broad range of instructional approaches, including questioning, problem solving, discourse, activation of prior knowledge, and student reflection on learning

9.1.2 Understands the relationship between instructional approaches, assessment, and the types of learning promoted

9.1.3 Understands how instructional materials and educational technologies enhance learning

9.2 Performance Indicators

9.2.1 Uses a range of instructional approaches that allows students to explore concepts and develop an in depth understanding of content

9.2.2 Designs lessons that routinely engage students in activities that develop problem solving and critical thinking skills

9.2.3 Designs instructional activities that provide opportunities for students to apply knowledge

9.2.4 Uses a variety of materials and educational technologies to enhance student thinking and further conceptual understanding

9.2.5 Assumes different roles in the instructional process based on the content and purposes of instruction

9.2.6 Uses a range of questioning techniques to promote different levels of understanding

9.2.7 Emphasizes communication as a vehicle for learning, through the use of discussion, listening, collaboration, and responding to the ideas of others

9.2.8 Links new concepts to student prior knowledge

9.2.9 Promotes student awareness of their own thought processes and how to use reflection to build new understandings

9.2.10 Incorporates assessment components into instructional delivery

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

10.0 Assessment

The teacher understands multiple assessment strategies and uses them for the continuous development of students.

10.1 Knowledge Components

10.1.1 Understands measurement theory, including principles of testing and assessment (e.g., design, validity, reliability, and bias)

10.1.2 Understands assessment as a means of collecting information about student progress

10.1.3 Understands the purposes and characteristics of different kinds of assessments

10.1.4 Understands how to select, construct, and use assessment strategies and instruments for diagnosis and evaluation of learning

10.1.5 Understands how to use the results of assessment to reflect on and modify teaching

10.2 Performance Indicators

10.2.1 Uses assessment to diagnose student learning needs as a basis for designing instruction

10.2.2 Uses a variety of assessment modes and multiple measures to evaluate student learning

10.2.3 Uses both formal and informal assessment strategies to monitor and evaluate student understanding, progress, and performance

10.2.4 Aligns assessment with instruction

10.2.5 Maintains accurate records and communicates student progress

10.2.6 Involves students in self assessment to help them become aware of their strengths and needs

10.2.7 Encourages students to establish personal goals for learning based on self-assessment and assessment results

10.2.8 Modifies instruction based on assessment results

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

11.0 Professional Growth

The teacher understands the importance of continuous learning and pursues opportunities to improve teaching.

11.1 Knowledge Components

11.1.1 Understands that reflection on teaching is an integral part of professional growth

11.1.2 Understands the implications of educational research for teaching

11.1.3 Understands methods of inquiry that provide for a variety of self assessment and problem solving strategies for reflecting on practice

11.2 Performance Indicators

11.2.1 Engages in continuous learning

11.2.2 Participates in professional discourse about educational issues

11.2.3 Uses classroom observation, information about students, pedagogical knowledge, and research as sources for active reflection, evaluation, and revision of practice

11.2.4 Collaborates with other professionals as resources for problem solving, generating new ideas, sharing experiences, and seeking and giving feedback

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

12.0 Professional Relationships

The teacher understands the role of the school in the community and collaborates with colleagues, parents, guardians or Relative Caregivers, and other members of the community to support student learning and well being.

12.1 Knowledge Components

12.1.1 Understands how schools are organized and operate

12.1.2 Understands schools as organizations within the larger community context

12.1.3 Understands the importance of community school interaction

12.1.4 Understands the importance of collaboration in education

12.2 Performance Indicators

12.2.1 Cooperates with colleagues to develop an effective learning climate within the school

12.2.2 Collaborates with other professionals to solve problems and make decisions to promote student success

12.2.3 Develops relationships with parents, guardians and Relative Caregivers to acquire an understanding of the students' lives outside of the school

12.2.4 Works effectively with parents, guardians, Relative Caregivers and other members of the community to advocate for student need and to promote learning

12.2.5 Identifies and uses community resources to enhance student learning and to provide opportunities for students to explore career opportunities

13.0 Educational Technology

The teacher understands the role of educational technology in learning and uses educational technology as an instructional and management tool.

13.1 Knowledge Components

13.1.1 Understands how to use various educational technological tools to access and manage information

13.1.2 Understands how to integrate educational technology into classroom instruction

13.1.3 Understands how to review and evaluate educational technologies to determine instructional value

13.1.4 Understands the uses of instructional technology to address student needs

13.2 Performance Indicators

13.2.1 Designs instruction to promote student skills in the use of educational technologies to access and manage information

13.2.2 Uses a wide range of instructional technologies to enhance student learning and problem solving

13.2.3 Uses technological advances in communication to enrich discourse in the classroom

13.2.4 Uses appropriate educational technology to create and maintain data bases for monitoring student progress

14.0 Professional Conduct

The teacher understands and maintains standards of professional conduct guided by legal and ethical principles.

14.1 Knowledge Components

14.1.1 Understands school policies and procedures

14.1.2 Understands legal issues in education

14.1.3 Understands the codes of conduct of professional education organizations

14.2 Performance Indicators

14.2.1 Acts in the best interests of students

14.2.2 Follows school policies and procedures, respecting the boundaries of professional responsibilities, when working with students, colleagues, and families

14.2.3 Follows local, state, and federal law pertaining to educational and instructional issues, including regulations related to student rights and teacher responsibilities

14.2.4 Interacts with students, colleagues, parents, and others in a professional manner

14.2.5 Follows codes of professional conduct adopted by the Delaware Professional Standards Board.

7 DE Reg. 75 (7/1/03)

12 DE Reg. 904 (01/01/09) (Prop.)

Renumbered effective 6/1/07 - see Conversion Table