Differentiated Teaching Levels

In the newest cohort of PICCS schools, all schools are using a common framework to set school-specific policies and practices for a differentiated teaching level system. While each school is customizing the differentiated teaching levels to meet their specific mission and instructional needs, they will use the following framework as a guide. The purpose behind this framework is to move away from hiring, retention and promotion practices that focus on years of service or number of graduate level credit hours earned to performance over time.

DIFFERENTIATED TEACHING LEVEL FRAMEWORK

Aspiring Teacher – A one-year appointment for a certified teacher with no prior teaching experience who serves in an apprentice position to an established teacher. Learn more about the PICCS Aspring Teachers program >>

Novice Teacher – A continuing appointment for a certified teacher with limited prior teaching experience who serves as teacher of record for a classroom/cohort. Focus is 100% on classroom instruction; does not take on any additional leadership positions in the school but does participate fully in collaborative teams. Learn more about how Novice Teachers are supported through Induction and Mentoring >>

Associate Teacher – A continuing appointment for a certified teacher with demonstrated effectiveness within a classroom based upon at least three years of evaluations at the Novice Teacher level (or equivalent) that measure professional practice and student outcomes. He or she serves as teacher of record for a classroom/cohort, with a primary focus on classroom instruction, and can also take on additional one-year appointments in leadership roles such as: Collaborative Team Leader, Data Team Coach, and other positions defined by the school.

Master Teacher – A continuing appointment for a certified teacher with demonstrated effectiveness at the Associate Teacher level (or equivalent); effectiveness based upon at least three years of evaluations at the Associate Teacher level (or equivalent) that measure professional practice and student outcomes. He or she serves as teacher of record for a classroom/cohort, with a primary focus on classroom instruction, and can also take on additional one-year appointments in leadership roles such as: Professional Learning Communities (PLC) Coach, Data Coordinator, Mentor Teacher, and other positions defined by the school.

Teacher Leader – A continuing appointment for a certified teacher with demonstrated effectiveness at the Master Teacher level (or equivalent); effectiveness based upon at least three years of evaluations at the Master level (or equivalent) that measure professional practice and student outcomes. He or she spends a portion of school day/week/year in classrooms providing direct instruction through a collaborative team teaching model where the other teacher is the teacher of record for the classroom/cohort, and spends the other portion of the school day/week/year providing leadership within the school community such as directing curriculum and instruction initiatives, guiding the charter renewal application, etc.


[i] The framework for the differentiated teacher ranks is informed, in part, by the Secretary of Education’s RESPECT initiative. Through this initiative, 16 Teacher Ambassador Fellows (active classroom teachers who served as temporary ambassadors for the U.S. Department of Education) held over 200 roundtable discussions with thousands of teachers from across the country about what it would take to transform teaching into one of America’s most valued professions. One of the key components was providing “career pathways and professional advancement” for teachers. See: http://www.ed.gov/teaching/national-conversation/vision/section-vi-career-pathways-and-professional-advancement