Standard P.5. Recruitment and Retention of Teacher Candidates
An effective mathematics teacher preparation program attracts, nurtures, and graduates high-quality teachers of mathematics who are representative of diverse communities.
A high-quality teacher of mathematics is one who is well prepared to begin teaching mathematics and who is also capable of achieving and exemplifying the knowledge, skills, and dispositions required for meeting the needs of mathematics learners in schools throughout a sustained teaching career. The well-prepared beginning teacher not only has strong mathematics content knowledge but also is skilled at teaching and disposed to care deeply about all students (Wilson & Cooney, 2002). At all levels, the teacher’s profile must include caring about children and young adults as well as having a productive disposition toward mathematics learning and teaching. Additionally the profile must include a passion for mathematics and for teaching as well as a commitment to positively affecting the learning of all students (CAEP, 2013). Explicit effort is required in teacher preparation programs to recruit and retain a potential teacher workforce that reflects the diverse communities they will serve. Teacher education programs that address this standard, its indicators below, and the other standards in this document are more likely than others to produce high-quality teacher candidates who will remain in the profession and affect student learning over a career (Darling-Hammond, 2000).
Racial and ethnic demographics of the population of students in today’s mathematics classes often differ significantly from demographics of their teachers, who are predominantly female, white, and monolingual (U.S. Department of Education, 2013). The lower college enrollment rates of students of color and barriers such as required scores on licensure examinations limit efforts to increase the diversity of mathematics teachers (Ahmad & Boser, 2014). Even with low enrollments, preparation programs must actively recruit and support a diverse teacher-candidate pool. For example, high-quality teacher candidates' profiles must include evidence of or potential for excellent academic achievement, but the candidates should also demonstrate promise for broader qualities and competencies of effective teachers. Achievements that indicate such promise include working with and meeting the needs of diverse students learning mathematics, particularly those who may have been traditionally discriminated against, excluded, or marginalized. Such experiences are as important to effective recruitment as high performance on traditional measures of academic achievement such as scores on standardized tests.