Kansas City Schools Change Licensing Requirements

April 20th, 2022 by admin Leave a reply »

The state of Kansas’ Board of Education is expected to make a change to teacher licensure requirements that could help Kansas City Schools get the teachers it needs. According to Martha Gage, director of teacher education and licensure, the Professional Standards Board recommends the improvements.

The changes will allow teachers in Kansas City Schools, and across the state, to add subjects to their portfolios with greater ease. Why is this important to Kansas City Schools? As a result of the state increase in science department credits required for graduation, the Kansas City Schools cannot fill its need for chemistry and physics teachers. This change would allow a biology teacher to take the competency test in a different science area, like chemistry, and be qualified to teach it.

Opponents voice concerns that this change will not ensure that Kansas City Schools’ teachers are really prepared to teach such in-depth subjects. John Richard Schrock, director of the biology education program at Emporia State University, feels that passing a competency test alone is not enough. These Indianapolis Schools’ teachers might be required to take more courses just in order to pass the difficult tests, but even would that prove sufficient?

But that’s not the only change that will hit Indianapolis Schools if the state’s board of education passes the initiative. The changes are designed to remove cumbersome paperwork and redundant information from the process of becoming a teacher in Kansas. While that should sound good to everyone, the final change involves lowering the grade point average (GPA) required to obtain conditional certification. Currently, a teacher applicant in Kansas City Schools must have a college GPA of at least 2.5. Of course, a veteran teacher from out of state may have a wealth of experience, and be a great teacher, but have done poorly 25 years ago in college. Proponents claim that the GPA is just one indicator of an applicant’s ability to teach. While some argue for maintaining the higher standards, the need for Kansas City Schools to find qualified teachers seems to be winning.

Advocates of both Kansas City Schools and the Kansas National Education Association feel that these changes are a way to fill the teacher gap while still maintaining a reasonable standard for teachers. Standards for both teachers and students have been a hot button topic in Kansas City Schools since the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) act went into effect in 2002. Its requirement for highly qualified teachers in areas like math and science, combined with the state’s increase in science credits for graduation has put Kansas City Schools in a teacher quandary. Kansas City Schools are not alone. Public schools nationwide have been forced to innovate and adapt in order to succeed in the current educational climate.


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