Budgetary Challenges: Teaching Performance Assessment, $10 million
The California legislature enacted Senate Bill 1209 (Scott) in 2006, requiring each teacher preparation program in the state to implement this Teaching Performance Assessment (TPA) with all teacher credential candidates beginning in 2008. Prior legislation (SB 2042, 1998) established the TPA requirement in statute, but made implementation subject to the availability of funds in the annual budget act. Since 2003, CSU campuses have been building their capacity through planning and small-scale pilot efforts to meet this requirement, in anticipation of future funding. To comply with the law, campuses will be required to put in place a comprehensive teaching performance assessment system that has been approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) in 2008/09.
The CSU anticipates that full implementation of the TPA will cost approximately $500 per candidate—$100 in
one-time start-up costs and $400 in ongoing costs, resulting in a systemwide cost of $10 million in 2008/09,
based on projected teacher education enrollments. The requested funding of $10 million is necessary in order
for campuses to develop the complete set of required TPA system components and to implement the TPA
standards on schedule.
Teacher candidate TPAs that fulfill the requirements of SB 2042 are designed to be analytically scored by
faculty members who have been trained in the calibrated scoring protocol. Resources needed to administer
and score the assessments vary across campuses, depending on the number of candidates enrolled in a
program. Funds are also required for start-up costs for TPA systems development and testing, faculty training,
and for the equipment associated with preparing required videotapes of candidate performance. Detailed cost
analyses demonstrate that costs are highly comparable among the various TPA systems.
In 2006/07, the CSU produced approximately 55 percent of the teachers who earned credentials in California
and had approximately 20,000 candidates enrolled in pre-student teaching, student teaching, and internships
that are to be covered by TPA assessment procedures. Enrollment in CSU teacher education programs
averages over 600 per campus, and ranges from approximately 125 to 1,785 student teachers and interns.
The TPA requirements in statute and the Assessment Quality Standards adopted by the CCTC in 2002 require
each institution to ensure that every one of its teacher candidates has been assessed in a valid, fair, and
reliable manner and that each faculty member scoring the TPA has been trained in the calibrated scoring
procedures that are part of the approved assessment system. These requirements bring practices that are
typically part of standardized testing programs to bear on an assessment system that is required by law to
be embedded in programs and administered by faculty. The performance-based assessment approach is
unprecedented in California and the nation. In the last two years, faculty members have reported that planning
for and piloting these new requirements has led to improvements in candidate assessment.
Pilot implementation of the TPA with groups of multiple and single subject candidates has enabled CSU
campuses to test TPA systems. The campuses are now prepared to expand to full-scale implementation with
a thorough understanding of the resource needs and implementation issues that must be addressed for a
successful first full year of implementation.
If this TPA program is not fully funded, CSU campuses will not be able to fulfill the TPA requirements of state
law. Teacher candidate TPA necessitates that teacher education programs incorporate significant new
performance-based candidate assessment activities within their programs. Since a candidate’s eligibility
to receive a credential will depend on successfully completing the TPA requirements beginning in 2008/09,
CSU campuses will be severely hampered in their ability to prepare and recommend candidates for teaching
credentials if they do not have the support needed to implement TPA assessment procedures.