Teaching Standards and Leadership Standards
Is working with students with disabilities and meeting the needs of students with disabilities addressed in state teaching standards?
The Delaware Professional Teaching Standards provide a common set of knowledge, skills, and attributes expected of Delaware’s teachers. The state incorporated and adopted the InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards.
Numerous elements of the InTASC Standards address the learning needs of students with disabilities. They include:
Standard 2 – Learning Differences: The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards.
- The teacher understands students with exceptional needs, including those associated with disabilities and giftedness, and knows how to use strategies and resources to address these needs.
Standard 6 – Assessment: The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making.
- The teacher prepares all learners for the demands of particular assessment formats and makes appropriate accommodations in assessments or testing conditions, especially for learners with disabilities and language learning needs.
- The teacher understands how to prepare learners for assessments and how to make accommodations in assessments and testing conditions, especially for learners with disabilities and language learning needs.
- The teacher is committed to making accommodations in assessments and testing conditions, especially for learners with disabilities and language learning needs.
Standard 7 – Planning for Instruction: The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context.
- The teacher plans collaboratively with professionals who have specialized expertise (e.g., special educators) to design and jointly deliver as appropriate effective learning experiences to meet unique learning needs.
- The teacher knows when and how to access resources and collaborate with others to support student learning (e.g., special educators).
Standard 9—Professional Learning and Ethical Practice: The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner.
- The teacher understands laws related to learners’ rights and teacher responsibilities (e.g., appropriate education for learners with disabilities).
Source: Title 14 Delaware Administrative Code 1597, Delaware Professional Teaching Standards
School Leadership Standards
Is knowledge of working with students with disabilities included in leader standards?
The Delaware Administrator Standards establish a common set of knowledge, skills and attributes expected of school leaders, and serve as the foundation for preparation and appraisal of school leaders. They do not specifically require school leaders to have knowledge of working with students with disabilities. However, the standards require an education leader to promote “the success of every student.” The state adopted the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) Standards for School Leaders as the state’s own.
Source: Delaware Department of Education, The Delaware Administrator Standards
Teacher and Principal Preparation
Teacher Preparation – Program Approval/Accreditation
Required course work in teaching students with disabilities/diverse learners
State regulations require educator preparation programs for elementary school teachers to include coursework that addresses the “developmental understanding and knowledge of learning disabilities and their impact on literacy and learning.” Educator preparation programs seeking state approval must maintain accreditation based upon the Standards established by Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). The CAEP Standards utilize an inclusive definition of “all PK-12 students,” including “students with disabilities or exceptionalities.”
Source: Delaware Administrative Code (D.A.C.) 14-290, Approval of Educator Preparation Programs
Clinical time in diverse settings/teaching special populations
Beginning on July 1, 2015, teacher preparation programs must include clinical experiences aligned with the program curriculum. They should align with the area, subject, or category of certification being sought by candidates. Further, teacher preparation programs must have a capstone clinical residency in which the candidate is supervised on-site by a high quality cooperating teacher, is a recipient of ongoing support from a high quality clinical supervisor, and is responsible for the instruction and classroom management of a roster of students.
CAEP Standard 3.3 requires preparation program providers to “design clinical experiences of sufficient depth, breadth, diversity, coherence, and duration to ensure that candidates demonstrate their developing effectiveness and positive impact on all students’ learning and development. Clinical experiences, including technology-enhanced learning opportunities, are structured to have multiple performance-based assessments at key points within the program to demonstrate candidates’ development of the knowledge, skills, and professional dispositions…that are associated with a positive impact on the learning and development of all P-12 students.”
D.A.C. 14-290.3.0, Approval of Educator Preparation Programs
Teacher Preparation – Accountability
Quality of teacher preparation programs
SB 51, passed in 2013, requires the Delaware Department of Education (DDOE) to track the performance of education program graduates on an annual basis for a period of five years after graduation if they teach in-state. Adopted in July 2014, a new state regulation implements this requirement statewide. Specifically, it establishes a DDOE-led educator preparation program approval and renewal process that requires approved programs to: (1) collaborate with the state to collect and report data, including data on performance and effectiveness of program graduates by student achievement; and (2) report on all aspects of program compliance and outcomes as a prerequisite for ongoing program approval. The regulation also establishes a process for public reporting that provides and publishes ratings of programs based on outcomes.
Source: D.A.C. 14-290, Approval of Educator Preparation Programs
Principal Preparation – Program Approval/Accreditation
Require course work in leading a school/district that serves students with disabilities/diverse learners
Our policy analysis did not identify state policies requiring coursework for principal candidates in leading a school/district that serves students with disabilities. According to state regulations, however, administrator preparation programs must include clinical experiences totaling a minimum of 240 hours equitably distributed within the program. The clinical hours must be completed under the mentorship of a currently employed administrator with an effective or highly effective summative rating.
Educator preparation programs seeking state approval must maintain accreditation based upon the Standards established by Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). The CAEP Standards utilize an inclusive definition of “all PK-12 students,” including “students with disabilities or exceptionalities.”
D.A.C. 14-290.3.0, Approval of Educator Preparation Programs D.A.C. 14-1591, School Principal and Assistant Principal D.A.C. 14-1595, Certification Program for Leaders in Education
Principal Preparation – Accountability
Are programs reviewed based on outcomes of graduates’ success? Can school principals be linked back to institutions of higher education and preparation programs?
SB 51, passed in 2013, requires the DDOE to track the performance of education program graduates on an annual basis for a period of five years after graduation if they teach in-state. Adopted in July 2014, a new state regulation implements this requirement statewide. Specifically, it establishes a DDOE-led educator preparation program approval and renewal process that requires approved programs to: (1) collaborate with the state to collect and report data, including data on performance and effectiveness of program graduates by student achievement; and (2) report on all aspects of program compliance and outcomes as a prerequisite for ongoing program approval. The regulation also establishes a process for public reporting that provides and publishes ratings of programs based on outcomes.
Source: D.A.C. 14-290, Approval of Educator Preparation Programs
Teacher and Principal Certification/Licensure
Teacher Certification/Licensure – Structure
Is a specific certificate, license or endorsement related to special education required?
Delaware does not distinguish between elementary and secondary special education teachers. The state offers only K-12 and birth-grade 2 special education licenses.
Source: National Council on Teacher Quality, 2014 State Teacher Policy Yearbook
Teacher Certification – Examination
Does the state require teachers to pass a basic skills exam for initial certification? What are the pass rates on the exams? Does the state require Praxis II or more pedagogical assessment for licensure? Does it include anything about teaching diverse learners or special populations?
Most professional educators seeking initial licensure in Delaware must pass the Praxis® Core Academic Skills for Educators (or provide passing scores for acceptable alternatives), must pass the appropriate Praxis II tests for each area of certification sought, and pass an approved performance assessment.
New regulations proposed by the Delaware Department of Education in May 2014 would establish more rigorous entry requirements as prerequisites for admission into an approved preparation program.
ETS Overview of Delaware Testing Requirements
D.A.C. 14-1510, Issuance of Initial License
Teacher Certification/Licensure – Requirements
Is professional development around working with special populations required to move from initial to a professional license?
The state of Delaware has a three-tiered teacher licensure system: Tier one (Initial licensure), Tier two (Continuing licensure), and Tier three (Advanced licensure). While ongoing professional development is required for the purpose of renewal and to move from one tier to the next, state regulations do not specify professional development around working with special populations as a requirement to mover from the initial to a professional license.
Delaware Code 14-1210, 14-1211, 14-1212, 14-1213, 14-1214,
Principal Certification/Licensure – Requirements
Is prior teaching experience required to become a principal and/or a superintendent? Is specific coursework or other evidence required around working with special populations?
The state of Delaware requires school leader candidates to obtain a Master’s degree and have prior teaching experience.
Principals: The state requires prospective School Principals and Assistant School Principals to: (1) Hold a valid Delaware Initial, Continuing, or Advanced License (or a Professional Status Certificate issued by the Department prior to August 31, 2003); (2) Have five years of teaching experience; and (3) Meet the certificate requirements as set forth in 14 DE Admin. Code 1505.
They must also satisfy at least one additional education requirement:
(1) A master’s or doctoral degree from a regionally accredited college or university in educational leadership offered by an NCATE specialty organization recognized educator preparation program or state approved educator preparation program where the state approval body employed the appropriate NASDTEC or NCATE specialty organization standards; or
(2) A master’s or doctoral degree from a regionally accredited college or university in any field and the successful completion of one of the following: A School Principal Course of Study, as defined in 14 DE Admin. Code 1595; or A School Principal Certification Program pursuant to 14 DE Admin. Code 1595.
D.A.C. 14-1591, Issuance of Initial License D.A.C. 14-1595, Issuance of Initial License
D.A.C. 14-1505, Issuance of Initial License George W. Bush Institute, Operating in the Dark
Teacher and Principal Induction
Is mentoring required for all new teachers and for how many years? If so, do program guidelines/requirements specifically address teaching diverse learners?
New teachers and teaching specialists (nurses, counselors and psychologists) are required to receive induction support during their first three years in the profession. First-year educators must receive at least 30 documented hours of support provided by a lead mentor; additional mentoring assistance is provided in year two and three at the discretion of the district, based on the educator’s performance, but districts are required to provide “continuing support” to second- and third-year teachers. Additionally, experienced teachers new to the state or new to a licensure category are also required to receive 30 hours of mentoring support during their first year of employment. [14 Delaware Code §1210(c) and 14 Education Code § 1503.4.0]
Source: New Teacher Center, Review of State Policies on Teacher Induction
Is coaching/mentoring required for all new principals/administrators/ superintendents and for how many years? If so, do program guidelines/requirements specifically serving diverse learners?
New school administrators are required to participate in an induction program, receiving at least 30 hours of documented mentoring support, during their first year of employment. Additional mentoring assistance in their second and third years is provided at the discretion of the district, based on the educator’s performance, but districts are required to provide “continuing support.” Additionally, experienced school administrators new to the state are also required to receive 30 hours of mentoring support during their first year of employment. [14 Delaware Code §1210(c) and 14 Education Code § 1503.4.0]
Source: New Teacher Center, Review of State Policies on Teacher Induction
Teacher and Principal Professional Development Standards
Teacher Professional Development Standards
Does the state have professional development standards for teacher PD?
In 2008, Delaware adopted the Professional Learning Standards developed by Learning Forward. These standards outline the characteristics of professional learning that leads to effective teaching practices, supportive leadership, and improved student results.
Source: Learning Forward
Principal Professional Development Standards
Does the state have professional development standards for leadership PD?
Our policy analysis did not identify such principal professional development standards.
Information compiled by New Teacher Center on behalf of the CEEDAR Center. The state did not respond to our request to verify this policy data.