CPS teachers hit new mark 

Hundreds attain prestigious National Board Certification.

January 16, 2009

Chicago Public Schools newest class of National Board Certified (NBC) teachers, 328 strong, was the largest of any big city school district in the U.S.


In all, CPS now boasts 1,191 teachers who have achieved the national board credential. This year’s class was the largest ever in a single year for Chicago Public Schools. Previously, the largest number of CPS board certified teachers in a single year was last year, when 210 teachers received that honor. In 1999, the district had only 11 teachers with an NBC credential.


Teachers voluntarily invest one to three years in pursuit of NBC status. To be eligible, a teacher must have completed three years of successful teaching in one or more of early childhood, elementary, middle or secondary schools.


NBC requires teachers to demonstrate their knowledge and skills through a series of performance-based assessments that include student work samples, classroom videotapes and rigorous analyses of their classroom teaching and student learning over time.


Three of the newly certified teachers are members of the Social Studies Department at Juarez Community Academy High School, 2150 South Laflin St. The school has a total of five NBC teachers, two more who are already pursuing the credential and another three who are beginning the process


The benefits of National Board Certified teachers are widespread throughout CPS:


  • More than 62,000 students in 367 CPS schools are directly benefiting from at least one NBC teacher in their classrooms or in school leadership positions.

  • Fifty-two CPS schools now have 15 percent or more of their staff with NBC certification.

  • Sixty percent of schools with NBC teachers have student populations that are 85 percent or more low-income.


The highest numbers of new board-certified elementary school teachers are at: William Gray School, 3730 N. Laramie Av., which boasts seven new NBC teachers on its faculty roster; Clara Barton, 7650 S. Wolcott Av., with six new NBC teachers; and Claremont, 2300 W. 64th St., with five. All are neighborhood schools with 84 percent or more low-income student populations. 


Among high schools, Whitney Young Magnet on the Near West Side added 12 new NBC teachers and Lane Tech, a selective enrollment school on North Western Avenue, added nine; Curie, a neighborhood high school on the Southwest Side added seven and nearby Kelly, also a neighborhood high school, added five.