WESTWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Teacher training schools at several Southland colleges may be hardly worth attending, according to a new study released Tuesday.
The “Teacher Prep Review 2013 Report” from the National Council on Teacher Quality reviewed over 1,100 colleges and universities that prepare elementary and secondary teachers and ranked the programs at UCLA and Loyola Marymount University (LMU) as substandard.
The report found students involved in teacher training at LMU and 20 other California colleges “are unlikely to obtain much return on their investment” and were unlikely to receive “even minimal training.”
Sandi Jacobs, vice president and state policy director at the National Council on Teacher Quality, told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO the report’s controversial findings are not necessarily a reflection of the caliber of teaching candidates coming out of those schools.
“Teachers learn a tremendous amount when they get in the classroom and can turn out to be very effective teachers,” Jacobs said. “We also know it’s possible you can hit all the high points in a program…we’re looking at the typical training that a teacher would get in that program and we’re finding it really lacking.”
In addition to a higher acceptance rate of lower-achieving students, graduation training programs in California were also found to be less likely that other national programs to give teachers feedback on how to handle classroom behavioral issues.
Less than 10 percent of all reviewed programs earned a rating of three stars or more, while only four earned a top rating of four stars: Lipscomb and Vanderbilt, both in Tennessee; Ohio State University; and Furman University in South Carolina.
Along with UCLA, UC Riverside, UC Santa Barbara and CSU Long Beach were among the campuses that earned a one-star rating for their graduate elementary programs.
Professor Megan Franke, who chairs the Department of Education at UCLA, said she thinks the report is inaccurate.
“Their report is seriously flawed in a number of different ways,” Franke said.
Some big-name local universities like USC were not included in the review, while LMU and hundreds of other schools declined to provide requested information to the National Council on Teacher Quality, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Click here to read the full report from the National Council on Teacher Quality.