Cover: Growing Teachers from Within

Growing Teachers from Within

Implementation, Impact, and Cost of an Alternative Teacher Preparation Program in Three Urban School Districts

Published Sep 29, 2020

by Julia H. Kaufman, Benjamin K. Master, Alice Huguet, Paul Youngmin Yoo, Susannah Faxon-Mills, David Schulker, Geoffrey E. Grimm

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Research Questions

  1. How were the TEACh preparation programs implemented across the three partner districts, and what lessons can we learn from the implementation of the TEACh programs?
  2. What was the impact of TEACh, in terms of the number of teachers hired through TEACh, achievement gains of their students, teachers' performance on district teacher evaluations, and teacher retention?
  3. What was the annual average cost of TEACh, and how did that cost compare with other teacher preparation programs?

TNTP, an organization committed to ending educational inequities by promoting the recruitment, training, and retention of high-quality teachers and school leaders, implemented its Teacher Effectiveness and Certification (TEACh) initiative in three urban school districts. Through TEACh, TNTP works with school districts to develop a within-district process to recruit, prepare, and certify teacher candidates, as well as hire and support them in their first year. As part of an evaluation of this initiative, RAND investigated each district program's implementation and costs, the effects of TEACh on the recruitment and retention of teachers, and the relative performance of those teachers. This is the final report for that evaluation.

Key Findings

Communication was vital to the implementation of TEACh

  • Transparent and effective communication between the TEACh program staff and teaching candidates defined participants' experiences in the program.
  • Collaboration between TNTP and district staff was key to ensuring that the TEACh program served its purpose but also fit with districts' diverse needs and infrastructure.

The impact of TEACh was clearest in its supply of racially diverse teachers for hard-to-staff district roles

  • The TEACh program contributed substantially to the supply of teachers in participating districts, particularly in hard-to-staff roles. TEACh teachers were also more racially diverse. They remained teaching in the district at rates comparable to those of other new teachers.
  • Achievement gains in mathematics were significantly higher for students of TEACh teacher candidates in their first year, relative to students of comparison first-year teachers, in each district. In English Language Arts (ELA), first-year results were directionally positive but not statistically significant.

The cost of TEACh was somewhat higher than that of similar programs, but the costs of various components in different districts varied widely

  • In its first three years, the average cost per TEACh hire was somewhat higher than available estimates for similar programs operating within or with school districts. However, the range of TEACh costs varied widely across the three districts and likely included large start-up costs.
  • Major TEACh program costs included the costs for district and TNTP staff and the costs for pre-service training and coaching, in particular.

Research conducted by

This research was sponsored by TNTP and undertaken by RAND Education and Labor.

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