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Vol. 46, No. 84
November 28, 2012

Vendors Selected to Create New State Educator Certification Assessment System

The state Office of Administration announced the vendors who will assist in the development of a Missouri educator certification assessment system. Educational Testing Service and Evaluation Systems (NCS Pearson) were selected after thorough evaluation from a pool of proposals submitted in response to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s request for proposals (RFPs).

"We look forward to partnering with Educational Testing Service and Evaluation Systems (NCS Pearson) on the new state assessment tools," said Karla Eslinger, assistant commissioner for the Office of Educator Quality at the Department. "The timing for the development of the assessments provides a great opportunity to align these tools with our new Missouri educator standards. The purpose of these tools is to ensure that our new teachers have the content knowledge and ability to provide quality instruction for success in the classroom, and ultimately for the success of Missouri’s students.”

The creation of the new assessment system was prompted by the new standards for educator preparation programs in Missouri, which were approved by the State Board of Education at its November meeting Tuesday. The Missouri Standards for Professional Educators (MoSPE) outline the standards educator preparation programs must follow and the requirements students seeking their educator certificate must meet in order to become certified.

"The new assessment tools will capture meaningful data, which will not only measure each candidate's mastery of required competencies, but also provide valuable information for all preparation programs," added Eslinger.

The educator assessment RFP opened in September with an October 5 deadline. An evaluation committee, identified through the Office of Administration, then reviewed the proposals and selected the best candidates for final approval. A committee of representatives from educator preparation programs, k-12 education systems, as well as other key members of the education community, will be identified by the Department with the intent to begin working on the development of the new assessment tools in January 2013. Once completed, the new assessment tools will replace or update current exams used to certify educators in Missouri.

The certification assessment addresses one of the Department's goals within the Top 10 by 20 initiative to prepare, develop and support effective educators. Top 10 by 20 is the Department's plan to launch Missouri into the top 10 performing states in education by the year 2020.