3/18/2011 Pearson Announced as TPA Vendor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:          Contact: David Brenna

                                                                                      360-725-6238 david.brenna@k12.wa.us

Olympia, Washington – March 17, 2011

Washington State’s Professional Educator Standards Board is a lead in a consortium that is developing a teacher assessment for pre-service teacher candidates. Stanford University led the national effort to design, test and pilot the instrument. Today, it was announced that the vendor for the project will be Pearson Education, Inc, a renowned education testing company.

The State’s PESB began as an early participant in the twenty state consortium and is considered an accelerated state; already having begun pilot testing. PESB has received legislative authorization and is planning to fully launch the Teacher Performance Assessment (TPA). Washington’s educator preparation programs at all public and private higher education institutions will require the TPA for all teachers completing their preparation programs beginning in the 2012-13 school year.

“The aim of consortium is to have The TPA adopted by so many other states that individuals completing teacher preparation programs  in other states seeking a license here  will have already demonstrated their skills and knowledge on the same assessment as individuals completing programs in Washington” said Jennifer Wallace, Executive Director of the PESB. Currently, teachers coming into the state are accepted through a state accord for reciprocity. The TPA will provide greater assurance that the training they received will meet the high standards in Washington State.

The PESB will begin negotiations with Pearson immediately to make the assessment available to Washington’s twenty-one colleges and universities that offer teacher preparation programs.

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.