The No Child Left Behind Act, which President Bush signed into law early in 2002, requires that Title I-funded teacher assistants have one of the following:
an associate's (two-year) degree
two years of college completed
demonstrated knowledge, through a formal state or local academic assessment, of reading/language arts, writing and mathematics
The law states that any assessment used to certify teacher assistants must be valid, reliable, and documented.
WorkKeys® fits these criteria and helps schools meet a key requirement of the No Child Left Behind Act. As a WorkKeys VAR (Value Added Reseller) and ACT Testing and Training Center, Lamar Institute of Technology can help local school districts meet the requirements of the No Child Left Behind legislation concerning instructional assistants. It is a legally defensible, U.S. Department of Labor-compliant testing system that contains assessments in all three subject areas required by No Child Left Behind, as well as a rating scale for teaching skills to be completed by a knowledgeable observer.
Based on ACT's WorkKeys system, the certificate program takes a four-pronged approach. It enables paraprofessional teacher assistants in Title I-funded schools to demonstrate their proficiency in three content areas-reading, writing, and mathematics-as well as their skills in assisting teachers in the classroom.
Through testing and on-the-job observation, teacher assistants can demonstrate knowledge and skill levels in line with what is achieved in two years of postsecondary study.
The real advantage to using this system is that it includes both skills testing and skills training. If job applicants earn WorkKeys scores that are below the passing level, they can train to improve their skills.
Training targeted for specific WorkKeys skill levels has been developed by several training companies, including KeyTrain and Worldwide Interactive Network (WIN).
Writing training from other e-learning providers is available through our network of ACT Centers.
Training is available for all three WorkKeys tests included in the teacher assistant proficiency certificate program.
LIT currently is partnering with several local school districts in providing online pre-testing, computer-based or paper/pencil assessments, re-testing, and online remediation.