NOVEMBER 8, 2001
Contact: Clara Potes-Fellow - 562/951-4800 / cpotes-fellow@calstate.edu

CSU Graduates join teaching profession in record numbers

Ninety-six percent of California State University graduates of teaching credential programs are working in K-12 schools, helping to alleviate the state’s teacher crisis, according to an evaluation that will be presented to the CSU Board of Trustees on Nov. 14.

This means that 19 of every 20 graduates of CSU teaching credential programs were hired and are still teaching in schools throughout California one full year following their graduation.

“This rate is exceptionally high compared to that of other states and educational institutions,” said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. “It is a very positive result considering other reports of high attrition in the teaching profession.”

In 1999-2000, more than 10,500 teachers graduated from 21 CSU campuses from Humboldt State to San Diego State.

Other results:

• A record 81 percent of the elementary school teachers received high marks from their supervisors regarding their level of preparation to teach reading skills. And 80 percent of the school principals favorably evaluated the university's preparation of elementary teachers in math.

• Furthermore, 86 percent of the supervisors -- school principals, vice-principals and department chairs -- offered positive evaluations of the university's preparation of teachers for grades 9-12.

• School supervisors also said that 84 percent of the graduates are confident, responsive and supportive in their interactions with parents.

"The survey shows that the State University prepares new teachers effectively, and that CSU graduates do well during their first challenging year in the public schools," said CSU Executive Vice Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer David S. Spence.

"The high marks given by school principals offer evidence of CSU's effectiveness at preparing teachers in reading and math, two crucial subjects for student success and preparation for college," Spence said. "The evaluation also shows that principals are satisfied with the performance of a vast majority of new high-school teachers from the CSU."

When the new elementary teachers were asked about the same issues, 74 percent said they felt prepared to teach reading-language arts. And 70% believe they are prepared to teach math following the new standards of math teaching set by the state.

In high schools, 74 percent of the new teachers from the CSU believed they were prepared to begin to teach their subject area.

“A substantial majority of our graduates feel they are ready to teach,” said Spence. “These percentages are especially positive when it is recognized that these are first-year teachers who are bound to feel some level of apprehension during the initial year in a very challenging school environment.”

California will need 300,000 new teachers for K-12 schools over the next 10 years.

The California State University is the largest producer of teachers in California and has made the commitment to reach out and prepare prospective teachers to solve the state’s shortage of fully credentialed teachers.

The study is the first evaluation of professional teacher preparation programs by an entire university system in the nation. It is the largest institutional evaluation ever done in California.

The evaluation conducted by the CSU Office of the Chancellor and the Deans of Education gathered reports from 1,406 CSU teaching graduates and 1,186 school administrators.

“We undertook this study to see where our strengths are and where we need to improve,” Reed said. “We will continue monitoring the progress of our Teacher Education Programs and establishing the high goals necessary to continuously produce superior quality teachers.”

Areas of improvement:

• CSU campuses will make further changes in teacher preparation so all
children in grades K-8 will get effective instruction in reading, language and math.

• CSU graduates who teach in high schools are very well prepared to teach their major subjects. Next CSU will strengthen its preparation to improve students' reading skills in several areas such as science, history and math classes.

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