ProTeach Launch

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                   Contact: David Brenna


Olympia, Washington – August 8, 2009

The Professional Educator Standards Board announced today that the new teacher assessment for professional certification will officially launch in January, 2010. The assessment, the Washington ProTeach Portfolio, was developed by a team of Washington educators facilitated by Educational Testing Service (ETS), a world-wide leader in assessment development, delivery, scoring and score reporting. Additionally, through the contract to administer and operate the assessment, ETS will ensure assessment validity and reliability.

Practicing teachers must pass this assessment in order to gain professional certification within five years of initial licensure. The ProTeach Portfolio has a number of advantages for teachers establishing their credentials in Washington State. Registration is open year long, with up to 14 months flexibility of choice in preparation time. Online registration in a user-friendly web format allows candidates to organize their own web site in which they can create their portfolio over time. Scoring is conducted by qualified Washington educators in a secure environment. Verification of teacher eligibility is conducted through existing residency qualification maintained by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, making registration simple and transparent.

For the ProTeach Portfolio, candidates will be required to submit responses to three sets of entry directions which measure the Washington Professional Certificate standards and criteria; these entries are Professional Growth and Contributions, Building a Learning Community, and Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment. The scores for the three entries will be summed, using a compensatory model. Candidates will meet a single passing standard and will be able to determine which entries to retake should they not meet the standard.

“The innovative resources of ETS are making the Washington ProTeach Portfolio a state-of-the-art portfolio assessment measuring whether candidates have met the standards and criteria for the Washington professional certificate. The use of Washington educators in the electronic scoring closes the loop for continuous improvement to the licensure system, as well as providing an excellent professional growth opportunity to experienced teachers,” says Esther Baker, Program Director, Teacher Assessments for the Professional Educator Standards Board.

“ProTeach takes our state to a new level, and distinguishes the Board as caring about a teacher’s career and honoring their commitment to children,” said Stephen Rushing, Chair of the Professional Educator Standards Board. “This represents the culmination of years of work and insight by lawmakers, board members, and educators from across the state.”

The Professional Educator Standards Board was established by the Legislature in 2000 and is responsible for setting and upholding high standards for the profession, ensuring that students encounter high-quality educators throughout their school experience. This deliberative body fulfills the state's intent for the profession to be self-governing, with a composition primarily of practicing educators and administrators joined by representatives from educator preparation programs, parents and citizens.