The National Board for Professional Standards in 1989 published What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do and re-released this seminal work recently. It outlines the National Board’s Five Core Propositions for Teaching, concepts that accomplished teachers should know and be able to promote to spur student achievement. They are:
Proposition 1: Teachers are committed to students and their learning.
Proposition 2: Teachers know the subjects they teach and how to teach those subjects to students.
Proposition 3: Teachers are responsible for managing and monitoring student learning.
Proposition 4: Teachers think systematically about their practice and learn from experience.
Proposition 5: Teachers are members of learning communities.
It’s worth noting that the very first proposition speaks to our commitment as teachers to our students’ learning. Our students come from diverse backgrounds, their lives are complex and many of them face challenges most of us can’t even imagine. Yet, as education professionals, we must find ways to inspire natural curiosity, imagination and the desire to learn in them all. National Board Certification helps us achieve that goal.
There’s no question that the road to National Board Certification can be long and winding, but the journey provides opportunities for amazing professional and personal growth. National Board Certified Teacher Ambereen Khan-Baker from Maryland blogs about how certification has helped her pay particularly close attention to issues of fairness and equity as she encourages student learning.
If we do not address safety, equity and diversity in our classrooms—now, today—then we will continue to fail large numbers of our students. During the past six months, I have heard and seen threatening messages reported by the media that have caused me, a Muslim, Pakistani-American National Board Certified Teacher, to question the standard of fairness, equity and diversity in a renewed and urgent way.
I stepped into my first full-time teaching gig at Orchard Elementary as a 4 th grade teacher fresh out of the university and student teaching. After one full day on the job, I realized how much I still had to learn. What I didn’t realize at the