[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 232 (Wednesday, December 3, 2014)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 71819-71892]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-28218]



[[Page 71819]]

Vol. 79

Wednesday,

No. 232

December 3, 2014

Part II





Department of Education





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34 CFR Parts 612 and 686





Teacher Preparation Issues; Proposed Rule

Federal Register / Vol. 79 , No. 232 / Wednesday, December 3, 2014 / 
Proposed Rules

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

34 CFR Parts 612 and 686

[Docket ID ED-2014-OPE-0057]
RIN 1840-AD07


Teacher Preparation Issues

AGENCY: Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: The Secretary proposes new regulations to implement 
requirements for the teacher preparation program accountability system 
under title II of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), 
that would result in the development and distribution of more 
meaningful data on teacher preparation program quality (title II 
reporting system). The Secretary also proposes to amend the regulations 
governing the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher 
Education (TEACH) Grant Program under title IV of the HEA so as to 
condition TEACH Grant program funding on teacher preparation program 
quality and to update, clarify, and improve the current regulations and 
align them with title II reporting system data.

DATES: We must receive your comments on or before February 2, 2015.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments through the Federal eRulemaking Portal 
or via postal mail, commercial delivery, or hand delivery. We will not 
accept comments by fax or by email. To ensure that we do not receive 
duplicate copies, please submit your comments only one time. In 
addition, please include the Docket ID at the top of your comments.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to www.regulations.gov to 
submit your comments electronically. Information on using 
Regulations.gov, including instructions for accessing agency documents, 
submitting comments, and viewing the docket, is available on the site 
under ``Are you new to the site?''
     Postal Mail, Commercial Delivery, or Hand Delivery: If you 
mail or deliver your comments about these proposed regulations, address 
them to Sophia McArdle, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street 
NW., Room 8017, Washington, DC 20006.

    Privacy Note: The Department's policy is to make all comments 
received from members of the public available for public viewing in 
their entirety on the Federal eRulemaking Portal at 
www.regulations.gov. Therefore, commenters should be careful to 
include in their comments only information that they wish to make 
publicly available.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sophia McArdle, U.S. Department of 
Education, 1990 K Street NW., Room 8017, Washington, DC 20006. 
Telephone: (202) 219-7078 or by email: sophia.mcardle@ed.gov.
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text 
telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-
800-877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Executive Summary

Purpose of This Regulatory Action

    Section 205 of the HEA requires States and institutions of higher 
education (IHEs) annually to report on various characteristics of their 
teacher preparation programs. These reporting requirements exist in 
part to ensure that members of the public, prospective teachers and 
employers (districts and schools), and the States, IHEs, and programs 
themselves have accurate information on the quality of these teacher 
preparation programs. These requirements also provide an impetus to 
States and IHEs to make improvements where they are needed and 
recognize excellence where it exists. Thousands of new teachers enter 
the profession every year, and their students depend on having well-
prepared teachers.
    Research from States such as Louisiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, 
and Washington has concluded that a teacher's preparation program 
significantly impacts the learning gains of a teacher's students.\1\ 
Statutory reporting requirements on teacher preparation program quality 
for States and IHEs are broad. The Department's existing reporting 
framework has not ensured sufficient quality feedback to various 
stakeholders on program performance. States must report on the criteria 
they use to assess whether teacher preparation programs are low-
performing or at-risk of being found to be low-performing, but it is 
difficult to identify programs deserving of recognition or in need of 
remediation or closure because few of the reporting requirements ask 
for information indicative of program quality. The Secretary is 
committed to ensuring that the measures by which States judge the 
quality of teacher preparation programs reflect the true quality of 
these programs and provide information that facilitates program self-
improvement, and by extension, student achievement.
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    \1\ See, for example, Tennessee Higher Education Commission, 
``Report Card on the Effectiveness of Teacher Training Programs,'' 
Nashville, TN (2010); Dan Goldhaber, et al. ``The Gateway to the 
Profession: Assessing Teacher Preparation Programs Based on Student 
Achievement.'' Economics of Education Review, 34 (2013), pp. 29-44.
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    These proposed regulations would address shortcomings in the 
current system by defining the indicators of quality that States will 
use to assess the performance of their teacher preparation programs, 
including more meaningful indicators of program inputs and program 
outcomes, such as the ability of the program's graduates to produce 
gains in student learning (understanding that not all students will 
learn at the same rate). To maintain alignment with definitions we use 
in other Departmental initiatives and to maintain consistency for the 
various entities that work with the Department, including States and 
school districts, we propose definitions that are almost identical to 
definitions used in initiatives such as ESEA Flexibility, the Teacher 
Incentive Fund, and Race to the Top. These proposed regulations would 
build on current State systems and create a much-needed feedback loop 
to facilitate program improvement and provide valuable information to 
prospective teachers, potential employers, and the general public.
    These proposed regulations would also link assessments of program 
performance under title II to eligibility for the Federal TEACH Grant 
program. The TEACH Grant program, authorized by section 420M of the 
HEA, provides grants to eligible IHEs, which in turn, use the funds to 
provide grants of up to $4,000 annually to eligible teacher preparation 
candidates who agree to serve as full-time teachers in high-need fields 
and schools for not less than four academic years within eight years 
after completing their courses of study. If a TEACH Grant recipient 
fails to complete his or her service obligation, the grant is converted 
into a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan and must be repaid 
with interest.
    Pursuant to section 420L(1)(A) of the HEA, a teacher preparation 
program must provide high-quality teacher preparation in order to be 
eligible to award TEACH Grants. However, of the 38 programs identified 
by States as ``low-performing'' or ``at-risk,'' 22 programs were based 
in IHEs participating in the TEACH Grant program. These proposed 
regulations would limit TEACH Grant eligibility to only those programs 
that States have identified as ``effective'' or higher.
    Please refer to the Background and Significant Proposed Regulations 
sections of this preamble for a more complete discussion of the purpose 
of this regulatory action.

[[Page 71821]]

    Summary of the Major Provisions of This Regulatory Action: The 
proposed regulations would--
     Establish necessary definitions, requirements for IHEs and 
States on the quality of teacher preparation programs, and requirements 
that States develop measures for assessing teacher preparation 
performance. The proposed regulations would support the 
Administration's goal of measuring program performance based on 
meaningful indicators.
     Establish required indicators that States must use to 
report on teacher preparation program performance and, in doing so, 
ensure that the quality of teacher preparation programs is judged on 
reliable and valid indicators of program performance.
     Establish the required areas States must consider in 
identifying low-performing and at-risk teacher preparation programs, 
the actions States must take with respect to those programs, and the 
consequences for a low-performing program that loses State approval or 
financial support. These proposed regulations would also establish the 
conditions under which a program that loses State approval or financial 
support would regain its eligibility for title IV, HEA funding.
     Establish a link between the State's classification of a 
teacher preparation program under the title II reporting system and 
that program's identification as ``high-quality'' for TEACH Grant 
eligibility purposes. The proposed regulations would support Congress's 
intent and the Administration's goal of ensuring that only high-quality 
teacher preparation programs may award TEACH Grants.
     Establish provisions that would allow TEACH Grant 
recipients to satisfy the requirements of their agreement to serve by 
teaching in a high-need field that was designated as high-need at the 
time of the grant.
     Establish conditions that would allow TEACH Grant 
recipients to discharge the requirements of their agreements to serve 
if they are totally and permanently disabled. The proposed regulations 
would also establish conditions that would allow these recipients to 
regain eligibility for new TEACH Grants under certain circumstances.
    Please refer to the Significant Proposed Regulations section of 
this preamble for a more complete discussion of the major provisions 
contained in this NPRM. Please refer to the Delayed Implementation Date 
and Revised Reporting Calendar section of this preamble for a schedule 
of when these regulations would affect State and institutional 
reporting.

Costs and Benefits

    Chart 1 summarizes the proposed regulations and related benefits, 
costs, and transfers that are discussed in more detail in the 
Regulatory Impact Analysis section of this preamble. Significant 
benefits of these proposed regulations include an improved 
accountability system that would enable prospective teachers to make 
more informed choices about their enrollment in a teacher preparation 
program and employers of prospective teachers to make more informed 
hiring decisions. Further, the proposed regulations would also create 
incentives for States and IHEs to monitor and continuously improve the 
quality of their teacher preparation programs, informed by more 
meaningful data. Most importantly, elementary and secondary school 
students would benefit from these proposed regulations because the 
feedback loop created would lead to better prepared, higher quality 
teachers in classrooms, especially for students in high-need schools 
and communities who are disproportionately taught by newer teachers.
    The net budget impact of the proposed regulations is approximately 
$0.67 million in reduced costs over the TEACH Grant cohorts from 2014 
to 2024. We estimate that the total cost annualized over 10 years of 
these regulations would be between $42.0 million and $42.1 million (see 
the Accounting Statement section of this document).

Invitation To Comment

    As discussed in the section of this notice entitled Negotiated 
Rulemaking, through a series of three regional hearings and four 
negotiated rulemaking sessions, there has been significant public 
participation in developing this notice of proposed rulemaking. In 
accordance with the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act, 
the Department invites you to submit comments regarding these proposed 
regulations. To ensure that your comments have maximum effect in 
developing the final regulations, we urge you to identify clearly the 
specific section or sections of the proposed regulations that each of 
your comments addresses and to arrange your comments in the same order 
as the proposed regulations.
    We invite you to assist us in complying with the specific 
requirements of Executive Order 12866 and 13563 and their overall 
requirement of reducing regulatory burden that might result from these 
proposed regulations. Please let us know of any further ways we could 
reduce potential costs or increase potential benefits while ensuring 
the effective, efficient, and faithful administration of the title II 
reporting system and TEACH Grant program.
    During and after the comment period, you may inspect all public 
comments regarding these proposed regulations by accessing 
Regulations.gov. You may also inspect comments, in person, in room 
number 8022, 1990 K Street NW., Washington, DC, between 8:30 a.m. and 
4:00 p.m. Washington, DC time, Monday through Friday of each week 
except Federal holidays. Please contact the person listed under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

Assistance to Individuals With Disabilities in Reviewing the Rulemaking 
Record

    On request we will provide an appropriate accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability who needs assistance 
to review the comments or other documents in the public rulemaking 
record for these proposed regulations. If you want to schedule an 
appointment for this type of accommodation or auxiliary aid, please 
contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

Negotiated Rulemaking

    Section 492 of the HEA requires the Secretary, before publishing 
any proposed regulations for programs authorized by title IV of the 
HEA, to obtain public involvement in the development of the proposed 
regulations. After obtaining advice and recommendations from 
individuals and representatives of groups involved in, or affected by, 
the proposed regulations, the Secretary must further develop the 
proposed regulations through a negotiated rulemaking process. In 
addition, section 207(c) of the HEA requires the Secretary to submit 
any proposed regulations implementing section 207(b)(2) to a negotiated 
rulemaking process. These proposed regulations would implement section 
207(b)(2) of the HEA, which provides that any teacher preparation 
program from which a State has withdrawn approval or terminated 
financial support due to low performance may not accept or enroll any 
student who receives aid under title IV of the HEA in the IHE's teacher 
preparation program.
    All proposed regulations that the Department publishes must conform 
to final agreements resulting from the negotiated rulemaking process 
unless

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the Secretary reopens the process or provides a written explanation to 
the participants stating why the Secretary has decided to depart from 
the agreements. Further information on the negotiated rulemaking 
process may be found at: http://www2.ed.gov/policy/highered/reg/hearulemaking/hea08/neg-reg-faq.html.
    The Department developed a list of proposed regulatory changes from 
advice and recommendations submitted by individuals and organizations 
in testimony at a series of three public hearings and four roundtable 
discussions held on:
    May 12, 2011, at Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee 
(roundtable only);
    May 16-17, 2011, at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, 
Washington;
    May 19-20, 2011, at Loyola University, Lake Shore Campus in 
Chicago, Illinois; and
    May 26-27, 2011, at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South 
Carolina.
    In addition, the Department accepted written comments on possible 
regulatory changes submitted directly to the Department by interested 
parties and organizations. Transcripts of all regional meetings and a 
summary of all comments received orally and in writing are posted as 
background material in the Regulations.gov docket and may also be 
accessed at http://www2.ed.gov/policy/highered/reg/hearulemaking/2011/hearings.html. Staff within the Department also identified issues for 
discussion and negotiation by the negotiated rulemaking committee.
    On October 26, 2011, the Department published a notice in the 
Federal Register (76 FR 66248) announcing our intent to establish a 
negotiated rulemaking committee to prepare proposed regulations under 
titles II and IV of the HEA. The notice requested nominations of 
individuals for membership on the committee who could represent the 
interests of key stakeholders.
    To develop proposed regulations, the Teacher Preparation Issues 
Committee (the Committee) met in three face-to-face sessions that took 
place on: January 18-20, 2012; February 27-29, 2012; and April 3-5, 
2012. The Committee met in an additional fourth session that was 
conducted via a webinar on April 12, 2012.
    At the first meeting, the Committee agreed on the protocols for the 
negotiations. The protocols provided that, for each community 
identified as having interests that were significantly affected by the 
subject matter of the negotiations, the non-Federal negotiators would 
represent the constituency listed before their names in the protocols 
to the negotiated rulemaking process.
    The Committee was made up of the following members:
    Eric Mann, Sandpoint High School, Idaho, and Eric Gregoire 
(alternate), Boston University School of Education, representing 
postsecondary students.
    Katie Hartley, Miami East Junior High, Ohio, and Qualyn McIntyre 
(alternate), Atlanta Urban Teacher Residency, representing teachers.
    Segun Eubanks, National Education Association, and James Alouf 
(alternate), Association of Teacher Educators, representing 
organizations that represent teachers and teacher educators.
    Joseph Pettibon, Texas A&M University, and David Smedley 
(alternate), The George Washington University, representing financial 
aid administrators at postsecondary institutions.
    Julie Karns, Rider University, and Karl Brockenbrough (alternate), 
Bowie State University, representing business officers and bursars at 
postsecondary institutions.
    George Noell, Louisiana State University, and Vance Rugaard 
(alternate), Tennessee Office of Licensing, representing State 
officials.
    Glenn DuBois, Virginia Community Colleges, and Ray Ostos 
(alternate), Maricopa Community College, representing two-year public 
institutions.
    David Steiner, Hunter College, and Ronald Marx (alternate), 
University of Arizona, representing four-year public institutions.
    David Prasse, Loyola University Chicago, and Mary Kay Delaney 
(alternate), Meredith College, representing private nonprofit 
institutions.
    Meredith Curley, University of Phoenix, and Bonnie Copeland 
(alternate), Walden University, representing private for-profit 
institutions.
    Cindy O'Dell, Salish Kootenai College, representing tribal 
institutions.
    Leontye Lewis, Fayetteville State University, and VerJanis Peoples 
(alternate), Southern University of Louisiana, representing 
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
    Beverly Young, California State University System, and Michael 
Morehead (alternate), New Mexico State University, representing 
Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs).
    Heather Harding, Teach for America, and Diann Huber (alternate), 
iteachU.S., representing operators of programs for alternative routes 
to teacher certification.
    Jim Cibulka, National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher 
Education and the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation, 
and Frank Murray (alternate), Teacher Education Accreditation Council 
and the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation, representing 
accrediting agencies.
    Sarah Almy, Education Trust, and Charmaine Mercer (alternate), 
Communities for Teaching Excellence, representing elementary and 
secondary students and parents.
    Thalia Nawi, Denver Teacher Residency, Denver Public Schools, 
representing school and local education agency (LEA) officials.
    Sophia McArdle, U.S. Department of Education, representing the 
Federal Government.
    The Committee's protocols provided that the Committee would operate 
by consensus, defined to mean unanimous agreement; that is, no dissent 
by any member of the Committee. Under the protocols, if the Committee 
reached final consensus, the Department would use the consensus 
language in the proposed regulations and members of the Committee and 
the organizations whom they represented would refrain from commenting 
negatively on the package.
    During its meetings, the Committee reviewed and discussed drafts of 
the proposed regulations. At the final meeting in April 2012, the 
Committee did not reach consensus on the proposed regulatory changes 
discussed at that meeting, which are now the subject of the proposed 
regulations in this NPRM.
    More information on the work of this Committee may be found at: 
http://www2.ed.gov/policy/highered/reg/hearulemaking/2011/teacherprep.html.
    This NPRM proposes regulations relating to the teacher preparation 
program accountability system under title II of the HEA and the TEACH 
Grant program under title IV of the HEA as discussed by the Committee.

Background

    In title II of the HEA, as amended in 2008 by the Higher Education 
Opportunity Act (Pub. L. 110-315), Congress enacted detailed public 
reporting requirements for States and IHEs that conduct traditional or 
alternative route teacher preparation programs. Section 205(a) requires 
each IHE that conducts a teacher preparation program and that enrolls 
students receiving Federal assistance provided

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under the HEA to report annually on specified information about its 
teacher preparation programs to its State and the general public. 
Similarly, section 205(b) requires each State that receives HEA funding 
to report annually to the Secretary and the general public specified 
information about those teacher preparation programs, as well as other 
information about State certification or licensure requirements and the 
teaching needs of LEAs. Section 205(c) requires the Secretary to report 
annually to Congress on the content of these State reports, including a 
comparison of States' efforts to improve the quality of the current and 
future teaching force.
    These IHE and State reporting requirements cover a wide range of 
information about a State's teacher preparation programs and new 
teacher certification or licensure process. IHEs must report on areas 
that include the characteristics of students' clinical experiences, 
pass rates of students who take assessments needed to become teachers, 
and how well the programs are meeting their goals in specified areas, 
such as addressing needs of English language learners and students with 
special education needs. States must also report on their certification 
or licensure procedures, the validity and reliability of assessments 
that the State requires for teacher certification or licensure, the 
availability of alternative route programs, the pass rates for students 
of each teacher preparation program on the State certification and 
licensure assessments, and the students' scaled scores on those 
assessments.
    In section 205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA, Congress required States to 
continue annually to provide a ``description of their criteria for 
assessing the performance of teacher preparation programs within 
institutions of higher education in the State'' and required that 
``[s]uch criteria shall include indicators of the academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills of students enrolled in such programs.'' 
As with all other elements of these reports, States must report their 
criteria for assessing the performance of teacher preparation programs 
``in a uniform and comprehensible manner that conforms to the 
definitions and methods established by the Secretary'' (HEA Sec.  
205(b)). Further, section 207(a) of the HEA requires States to disclose 
in their annual reports those teacher preparation programs that they 
had identified as either low-performing or at-risk of being considered 
low-performing, and to provide technical assistance to those they 
identified as low-performing. Section 207(b) requires the loss of 
Federal financial support to any teacher preparation program for which 
the State has withdrawn its approval or terminated State financial 
support. Section 205(c) directs the Secretary to establish regulations 
to ensure the validity, reliability, integrity and accuracy of data 
submitted.
    The statutory reporting requirements for States and IHEs in section 
205(a) and (b) are thus extensive, with a chief purpose of improving 
the overall quality of teacher preparation programs and the programs' 
ability to produce teachers who are well-prepared to teach when they 
enter the classroom. See, e.g., H. Rep. 100-803, the House-Senate 
conference report accompanying H.R. 4137, which was enacted as Pub. L. 
110-315.
    Notwithstanding the focus that Congress has placed on improving the 
quality of new teachers produced by teacher preparation programs and 
improving or closing programs that are low-performing, these State and 
IHE reporting requirements have not produced information that is 
sufficiently helpful to programs, the public, or the Secretary in 
improving low-performing teacher preparation. To date, the Department 
has relied exclusively upon each State to establish, implement, and 
report upon its own criteria and indicators thereof for determining the 
effectiveness of teacher preparation programs in that State and for 
identifying and improving low-performing teacher preparation programs. 
In 2011, the most recent year for which data are available, States 
identified only 38 teacher preparation programs as low-performing or 
at-risk. Twenty-nine of these programs were identified as at-risk and 
nine were designated as low-performing. Thirty-two of the 38 low-
performing or at-risk teacher preparation programs were located in 
traditional teacher preparation institutions, and six were alternative 
route teacher preparation programs not based at an IHE. Additionally, 
of the 38 programs identified by States as low-performing or at-risk, 
22 were based in IHEs that participate in the TEACH Grant Program. Over 
the last dozen years, 34 States have never identified a single low-
performing or at-risk program at a single IHE.\2\
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    \2\ See the Secretary's annual reports at: https://title2.ed.gov/Public/SecReport.aspx.
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    The data that are collected and reported have not led to an 
identification of significant improvements in teacher preparation 
program performance in part because the data are not based on 
meaningful indicators of program effectiveness. Rather than focusing on 
outcome measures of program quality, the title II reporting system 
currently relies on States to establish their own indicators of program 
effectiveness, while at the same time directing States and IHEs to fill 
out annual questionnaires having a combined total of almost 600 fields. 
There are more than 400 fields in the State report card (SRC) and more 
than 150 fields in the institutional report card (IRC). These questions 
focus heavily on teacher preparation program inputs--such as admission 
requirements (including whether a program applicant must submit a 
resume as a condition of admission), student demographic information, 
and clock-hour requirements for participation in the program's 
supervised clinical experience--and not on outcomes or program impact.
    Through these proposed regulations, the Department aims to provide 
teacher preparation programs, local educational agencies (LEAs), 
prospective teachers, and the general public with access to more 
meaningful indicators of teacher preparation program performance. These 
indicators would be based not only on program inputs but also program 
outcomes, including the ability of the program's graduates to produce 
gains in student learning. These indicators would also include 
employment outcomes such as placement and retention rates of program 
graduates and survey data from past graduates and their employers. 
Creating a feedback loop between school districts and higher education 
will not only facilitate program improvement, but will also provide 
information that can be used, for example, by potential employers to 
guide their hiring decisions and by prospective teachers to guide their 
application decisions.
    The Department also intends to use information gathered through the 
title II reporting system to determine institutional and program 
eligibility for the Federal TEACH Grant program. Authorized under title 
IV of the HEA, the TEACH Grant program provides aid to students at IHEs 
who are preparing to become teachers. Pursuant to section 420L(1)(a) of 
the HEA, eligible IHEs must provide ``high-quality'' teacher 
preparation services at the baccalaureate, post-baccalaureate, or 
master's degree level to be eligible for TEACH Grants (see 34 CFR part 
686 for the regulations governing this program). In exchange for a 
TEACH Grant, a student must teach in a low-income school and in a high-
need field for four years. The student must complete the service 
obligation within eight years of

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completing the program for which the student obtained the grant, or the 
student's TEACH Grant converts to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized 
Stafford Loan.
    The term ``high-quality teacher preparation program,'' which is 
used in section 420L(1)(A) of the HEA and throughout part 686 
pertaining to the TEACH Grant program, is not currently defined by 
statute or in the TEACH Grant program regulations. The Department seeks 
to define ``high-quality teacher preparation program'' in part because, 
of the 38 programs identified by States as ``low-performing'' or ``at-
risk,'' 22 programs were based in IHEs participating in the TEACH Grant 
program. Further, based on data from national surveys and existing 
teacher loan forgiveness programs, the Department currently estimates 
that approximately 75 percent of participating students will not 
complete the required service obligation. The Department intends to 
limit TEACH Grants to students enrolled in teacher preparation programs 
deemed by States to be of ``effective'' quality or higher in part 
because we believe that a larger percentage of TEACH Grant recipients 
will be able to fulfill their service obligations if they have been 
prepared by strong teacher preparation programs that: (1) Provide to 
prospective teachers the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in 
the classroom; and (2) have high placement and retention rates.

Summary of Proposed Changes

    These proposed regulations would establish specific indicators that 
States would use to assess and report on the quality of teacher 
preparation programs under the title II reporting system. The 
indicators would ensure the collection of more meaningful data that can 
be used to improve teacher preparation programs. These proposed 
regulations also would amend the TEACH Grant program regulations to 
link TEACH Grant program eligibility to the determinations of quality 
made and reported by States under the title II reporting system.
    These proposed regulations would address teacher preparation issues 
by:
     Establishing definitions for the terms ``at-risk teacher 
preparation program,'' ``candidate accepted into a teacher preparation 
program,'' ``candidate enrolled in a teacher preparation program,'' 
``content and pedagogical knowledge,'' ``effective teacher preparation 
program,'' ``employer survey,'' ``employment outcomes,'' ``exceptional 
teacher preparation program,'' ``high-need school,'' ``low-performing 
teacher preparation program,'' ``new teacher,'' ``quality clinical 
preparation,'' ``recent graduate,'' ``rigorous teacher candidate entry 
and exit qualifications,'' ``student achievement in non-tested grades 
and subjects,'' ``student achievement in tested grades and subjects,'' 
``student growth,'' ``student learning outcomes,'' ``survey outcomes,'' 
``teacher evaluation measure,'' ``teacher placement rate,'' ``teacher 
preparation entity,'' ``teacher preparation program,'' ``teacher 
retention rate,'' and ``teacher survey'' (see proposed Sec.  612.2(d)).
     Establishing reporting requirements for IHEs on the 
quality of their teacher preparation programs (see proposed Sec.  
612.3).
     Establishing reporting requirements for States on the 
quality of teacher preparation programs, and requirements that States 
develop measures for assessing the performance of teacher preparation 
programs in consultation with stakeholders (see proposed Sec.  612.4).
     Establishing requirements related to the indicators States 
must use to report on teacher preparation program performance (see 
proposed Sec.  612.5).
     Establishing requirements related to the areas States must 
consider in identifying low-performing and at-risk teacher preparation 
programs and the actions States must take with respect to those 
programs (see proposed Sec.  612.6).
     Establishing the consequences for a low-performing teacher 
preparation program that loses State approval or financial support (see 
proposed Sec.  612.7).
     Providing for the conditions under which a low-performing 
teacher preparation program that has lost State approval or financial 
support may regain its eligibility for title IV, HEA funding and may 
resume accepting and enrolling students who receive title IV, HEA funds 
(see proposed Sec.  612.8).
     Adding or amending definitions of the terms 
``classification of instructional programs,'' ``educational service 
agency,'' ``high-quality teacher preparation program,'' ``school or 
educational service agency serving low-income students (low-income 
school),'' ``TEACH Grant-eligible institution,'' ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program,'' ``TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering, and 
mathematics (STEM) program'' and ``teacher preparation program'' to 
Sec.  686.2.
     Using the States' determination of teacher preparation 
program quality under proposed Sec. Sec.  612.4 and 612.5 to determine 
whether a teacher preparation program is a ``high-quality teacher 
preparation program'' for the purpose of establishing TEACH Grant 
eligibility (see proposed definition of ``high-quality teacher 
preparation program'' in Sec.  686.2(e)).
     Establishing a requirement that to continue to be TEACH 
Grant-eligible, a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics 
(STEM) program must not be identified by the Secretary as having fewer 
than sixty percent of its TEACH Grant recipients completing at least 
one year of teaching that fulfills the service obligation pursuant to 
Sec.  686.40 within three years of completing the program (see proposed 
definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering, 
or mathematics (STEM) program'' in Sec.  686.2(e)).
     Clarifying the conditions under which TEACH Grant 
recipients may receive additional TEACH Grants to complete a teacher 
preparation program, even if that program is no longer considered a 
TEACH Grant-eligible teacher preparation program or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program under these proposed regulations (see proposed 
Sec.  686.3(c)).
     For teaching service performed on or after July 1, 2010, 
providing that a TEACH Grant recipient who otherwise meets the 
requirements of his or her agreement to serve may satisfy the 
requirement to teach in a high-need field if that field was listed, as 
of the date the grant recipient signed the agreement to serve or 
received the TEACH Grant, in the Department's annual Teacher Shortage 
Area Nationwide Listing (Nationwide List) for the State in which the 
grant recipient begins teaching (see proposed Sec.  686.12).
     Establishing the conditions under which a student would be 
eligible to receive a new TEACH Grant if the student's previous TEACH 
Grant was discharged based on total and permanent disability (see 
proposed Sec.  686.11(d)).
     Amending the provisions for discharging a TEACH Grant 
recipient's service obligation based on total and permanent disability 
to conform to changes made to the discharge process in the title IV, 
HEA loan programs (see proposed Sec.  686.42(b)).

Significant Proposed Regulations

    We discuss substantive issues under the sections of the proposed 
regulations to which they pertain. Generally, we do not address the 
regulatory provisions that are technical or otherwise minor in effect.

Part 612--Title II Reporting System

Subpart A--Scope, Purpose and Definitions
    Statute: Sections 205 through 208 of the HEA establish the teacher

[[Page 71825]]

preparation program accountability system through which IHEs and States 
report on the performance of their teacher preparation programs.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: In proposed subpart A of part 612, we 
describe the scope and purpose of part 612 and define key terms. In 
proposed Sec.  612.2(a), (b) and (c), we identify those definitions 
from 34 CFR parts 600 and 668, and 34 CFR 77.1, respectively, that 
would apply to part 612. In proposed Sec.  612.2(d), we define: ``at-
risk teacher preparation program,'' ``candidate accepted into a teacher 
preparation program,'' ``candidate enrolled in a teacher preparation 
program,'' ``content and pedagogical knowledge,'' ``effective teacher 
preparation program,'' ``employer survey,'' ``employment outcomes,'' 
``exceptional teacher preparation program,'' ``high-need school,'' 
``low-performing teacher preparation program,'' ``new teacher,'' 
``quality clinical preparation,'' ``recent graduate,'' ``rigorous 
teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications,'' ``student 
achievement in non-tested grades and subjects,'' ``student achievement 
in tested grades and subjects,'' ``student growth,'' ``student learning 
outcomes,'' ``survey outcomes,'' ``teacher evaluation measure,'' 
``teacher placement rate,'' ``teacher preparation entity,'' ``teacher 
preparation program,'' ``teacher retention rate,'' and ``teacher 
survey.''
    Reasons: We have included proposed Sec.  612.1 to summarize the 
purpose of new part 612 and to lay out the organization of the part. 
Proposed Sec.  612.2 defines key terms that are used, but not defined, 
in title II of the HEA as well as other important terms that are 
introduced in this part. We discuss our reasoning for each proposed 
term under the section of the regulations in which the term would first 
be used, except for the terms ``content and pedagogical knowledge,'' 
``quality clinical preparation,'' and ``rigorous teacher candidate 
entry and exit qualifications,'' all of which are discussed in the 
Reasons section for proposed Sec.  612.5.
Subpart B--Reporting Requirements


Sec.  612.3  What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the 
institutional report card?

    Statute: Section 205(a) of the HEA requires that each IHE that 
conducts a traditional teacher preparation program or an alternative 
route to State certification or licensure program and enrolls students 
receiving Federal assistance under the HEA annually report on the 
quality of its teacher preparation to the State and the general public 
in a uniform and comprehensible manner that conforms with the 
definitions and methods established by the Secretary. Section 
205(a)(1), (a)(2) and (a)(4) of the HEA identify the minimum content 
requirements for the IRC.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: Under proposed Sec.  612.3, according to a 
revised reporting calendar, starting October 1, 2017, and annually 
thereafter, each IHE that conducts a traditional teacher preparation 
program or an alternative route to State certification or licensure 
program and enrolls students receiving Federal financial assistance 
under the HEA would be required to report to the State and general 
public on the quality of its teacher preparation using an institutional 
report card prescribed by the Secretary. As suggested by several non-
Federal negotiators, the IHE would be required to provide this 
information to the general public by prominently and promptly posting 
the IRC information on the IHE's Web site, and, if applicable, on the 
teacher preparation program portion of the IHE's Web site. The IHE 
could also provide that information in promotional materials it makes 
available to prospective students and others.
    Reasons: This section would codify in regulations the statutory 
requirement governing reporting by IHEs that conduct a traditional 
teacher preparation program or an alternative route to State 
certification or licensure program. There are no current regulations 
that do this. The Department is not proposing regulations related to 
the specific reporting requirements for the IRC. Rather, the Secretary 
would continue to prescribe the specific reporting requirements for 
IHEs in the IRC itself. Being an information collection instrument, the 
IRC is subject to a separate approval process that includes an 
opportunity for public comment under the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 
U.S.C. 3501 et seq.
    While annual title II reporting is required by section 205(a) of 
the HEA, the mechanisms IHEs use to report are determined by the State. 
However, to ease reporting burdens, the Department developed the IRC 
system. The IRC system is an online tool that States, IHEs, and other 
organizations with State-approved teacher preparation programs can use 
to fulfill the annual reporting requirements on teacher preparation and 
other matters mandated by title II of the HEA.
    As explained in the Delayed Implementation Date and Revised 
Reporting Calendar discussion under Sec.  612.4, we are proposing to 
revise the reporting calendar in order to ensure that the public and 
programs receive more timely feedback on program performance. Thus, we 
are proposing that institutional reporting will occur in October of 
each calendar year covering data from the prior academic year, rather 
than (as currently) April of the following calendar year. In order to 
have time to prepare for this change, the first year for this new 
reporting schedule will be in 2017 covering data from the 2016-2017 
academic year. Prior to October 2017, IHEs will continue to report, as 
currently, in April of each calendar year covering data from the prior 
academic year.
    In proposed Sec.  612.3(b), we would require IHEs to prominently 
and promptly post the IRC information on the IHE's Web site and, if 
applicable, on the teacher preparation program's portion of the IHE's 
Web site. This proposed requirement is also based on information we 
obtained during the negotiated rulemaking process. Non-Federal 
negotiators stated that a reasonable way for IHEs to share the IRC 
information with the general public was for IHEs to post the 
information promptly and prominently on their Web sites, thus providing 
easy access for anyone seeking report card information. We agreed.
    In proposed Sec.  612.3(c), we would clarify that at its 
discretion, an IHE may also provide the IRC information to the general 
public in promotional materials it makes available to prospective 
students and others. While regulatory language is not needed to permit 
IHEs to do so, we propose to include this provision because we believe 
that many people rely on promotional materials instead of, or in 
addition to, Web sites in their decision-making process, and we wish to 
specifically encourage IHEs to consider providing as much information 
as possible in their promotional materials.


Sec.  612.4  What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the 
State report card?

    Statute: Section 205(b)(1) of the HEA provides that each State that 
receives funds under the HEA must report annually, in a State report 
card, on the quality of teacher preparation in the State, both for 
traditional teacher preparation programs and for alternative routes to 
State certification or licensure programs. Each State must report this 
information to the Secretary and make it widely available to the 
general public in a uniform and comprehensible manner that conforms to 
the definitions and methods established by the Secretary. By virtue of 
the definition of ``State'' in section 103(16) of the HEA, the 
statutory reporting requirements

[[Page 71826]]

apply to each of the 50 States of the United States, the Commonwealth 
of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Guam, American Samoa, the 
United States Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana 
Islands, and the freely associated states of the Republic of the 
Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic 
of Palau.
    Section 205(b)(1)(A) through (b)(1)(L) of the HEA lists the minimum 
content requirements for the State report card. In particular, section 
205(b)(1)(F) requires each State to include in its State report card a 
description of the State's criteria for assessing the performance of 
teacher preparation programs within IHEs in the State. This provision 
further requires that the criteria include indicators of the academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of students enrolled in the 
teacher preparation programs. Section 200(23) of the HEA defines the 
term ``teaching skills'' as those skills that enable a teacher, among 
other competencies, to effectively convey and explain academic content. 
In addition, section 205(b)(1) authorizes the Secretary to include 
other reporting elements in the State report card beyond those set 
forth in paragraphs (b)(1)(A) through (b)(1)(L).
    Finally, section 205(c) requires the Secretary to prescribe 
regulations to ensure the reliability, validity, integrity, and 
accuracy of the data submitted in the institutional and State report 
cards, and section 208(a) requires the Secretary to ensure that States 
and IHEs use fair and equitable methods in reporting the data required 
by the institutional and State report cards.
    Current Regulations: None.

Proposed Regulations

Proposed Sec.  612.4(a)--General State Report Card Reporting

    The Department proposes to add new Sec.  612.4(a) to require that, 
beginning on April 1, 2018, and annually thereafter, each State that 
receives funds under the HEA report to the Secretary and the general 
public, using a SRC prescribed by the Secretary, (1) the quality of all 
approved teacher preparation programs in the State, including distance 
education programs, whether or not they enroll students receiving 
Federal assistance under the HEA, and (2) all other information 
consistent with section 205(b)(1) of the HEA. As explained further in 
the discussion of Pilot Reporting, during the first reporting year for 
this regulation, States would be permitted to pilot the new reporting 
requirements and would not be required to classify programs in at least 
four levels of program performance using the indicators in proposed 
Sec.  612.5, although a State could do so at its option. Regardless of 
whether a State chooses to pilot program classification according to 
the new requirements, States would nevertheless be required to identify 
low-performing programs and programs at risk of being low-performing, 
using current indicators, as required by section 207(a) of the HEA. 
Each State would be required to post the SRC information on the State's 
Web site.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)--Reporting of Information on Teacher 
Preparation Program Performance

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b), the Department would identify 
specific content requirements, criteria, and data that a State would 
use, beginning in April 2019 and annually thereafter, to assess the 
performance of each teacher preparation program in addition to the 
reporting elements expressly identified in section 205(b) of the HEA. 
The Department proposes to define a number of terms used in those 
proposed requirements in Sec.  612.2(d). Because the definitions affect 
the discussion that follows of proposed regulations to govern 
assessments of the performance of teacher preparation programs, we 
first note two proposed definitions--``teacher preparation entity'' and 
``teacher preparation program''--that identify the universe of affected 
programs. ``Teacher preparation entity'' would be defined as an IHE or 
other organization that is authorized by the State to prepare teachers. 
``Teacher preparation program'' would be defined as a program, whether 
traditional or alternative route, offered by a teacher preparation 
entity that leads to a specific State teacher certification or 
licensure in a specific field.
    Additionally, under Sec.  612.2(d), we propose definitions for the 
terms ``new teacher'' and ``recent graduate.'' We propose to define the 
term ``new teacher'' as a recent graduate or alternative route 
participant who, within the last three title II reporting years, has 
received a level of certification or licensure that allows him or her 
to serve in that State as a teacher of record. Under the definition, 
States would only be required to report on the student learning 
outcomes, employment outcomes, and survey outcomes of new teachers who 
teach K-12 students unless, in the State's discretion, the State 
chooses to define ``new teacher'' to include teachers of preschool 
students, and thereby include reporting on the student learning 
outcomes, employment outcomes, and survey outcomes of such teachers. 
The term ``recent graduate'' would refer to an individual whom a 
teacher preparation program has documented as having met all the 
requirements of a teacher preparation program within the last three 
title II reporting years. The definition would provide that 
documentation may take the form of a degree, institutional certificate, 
program credential, transcript, or other written proof of having met 
the program's requirements. The definition would also clarify that 
whether an individual has been hired as a full-time teacher or been 
recommended to the State for initial certification or licensure may not 
be used as a criterion for determining who is a recent graduate.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1)--Meaningful Differentiations in Teacher 
Preparation Program Performance

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), beginning in April, 2019 and 
annually thereafter, each State would be required to report how it has 
made meaningful differentiations of teacher preparation program 
performance using at least four performance levels: ``low-performing,'' 
``at-risk,'' ``effective,'' and ``exceptional'' that are based on the 
indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5 including, in significant part, 
employment outcomes for high-need schools and student learning 
outcomes. At its discretion, a State could choose to identify teacher 
preparation program performance using more than these four levels.
    The Department would define key classifications and related terms. 
First, the Department would include in Sec.  612.2(d) definitions of 
the terms ``exceptional teacher preparation program,'' ``effective 
teacher preparation program,'' ``at-risk teacher preparation program,'' 
and ``low-performing teacher preparation program.'' These definitions 
would reflect that those performance levels are based upon the State's 
assessment of the teacher preparation program's performance using, at a 
minimum, the teacher preparation program performance indicators in 
proposed Sec.  612.5. Second, the Department would define the term 
``student learning outcomes'' as data, for each teacher preparation 
program in a State, on the aggregate learning outcomes of students 
taught by new teachers that are calculated by the State using one or 
both of the following: ``student growth'' and ``teacher evaluation 
measures,'' both of which also would be defined in proposed Sec.  
612.2(d). Finally, the Department would define the term ``high-need 
school'' as used in the requirement for ``employment outcomes for high-
need

[[Page 71827]]

schools'' as the placement and retention rates calculated for high-need 
schools as those terms would be defined in proposed Sec.  612.2(d). For 
a complete discussion of these terms, please see the discussion under 
proposed Sec.  612.5.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(2)--Satisfactory or Higher Student Learning 
Outcomes for Programs Identified as Effective or Higher

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(2), a State would not be permitted to 
identify a teacher preparation program as having a performance level of 
effective or higher unless the State determined the program had 
satisfactory or higher student learning outcomes. Our proposed 
regulation reflects the recommendation of non-Federal negotiators and 
ensures that States consider student performance when they classify 
programs by levels of performance.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)--Disaggregated Data, Assurances of 
Accreditation or Quality of Program Characteristics, Weighting, and 
Rewards or Consequences

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i), each State would, for each 
teacher preparation program in its State, (1) report disaggregated data 
that corresponds to each of the indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5, and 
(2) provide an assurance that the teacher preparation program is either 
accredited by a specialized agency pursuant to Sec.  612.5(a)(4)(i), or 
produces teacher candidates with quality clinical preparation and 
content and pedagogical knowledge, and who have met rigorous teacher 
candidate entry and exit qualifications. Each of these terms (``quality 
clinical preparation,'' ``content and pedagogical knowledge,'' and 
``rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications'') would be 
defined in Sec.  612.2(d). The definitions of each of these terms 
reflect the specific and detailed suggestions of non-Federal 
negotiators. For a complete discussion of these terms, please see the 
discussion under proposed Sec.  612.5.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(ii) and (iii), each State would be 
required to report how it weighted the teacher preparation program 
performance indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5, and the State-level 
rewards or consequences associated with each teacher preparation 
program performance level.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4) Reporting the Performance of All Teacher 
Preparation Programs

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4), except for certain programs 
subject to proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D) or (E), each State would 
ensure that all of its teacher preparation programs are represented in 
the SRC. In this regard, each State would be required to report 
annually and separately on the performance of each teacher preparation 
program that produces a total of 25 or more new teachers in a title II 
reporting year. Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4) would permit a State, at its 
discretion, to establish a program size threshold lower than 25. For 
example, a State might determine that it has the capacity to report on 
programs with 15 new teachers.
    Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii) describes the reporting requirements 
for teacher preparation programs in the State that do not meet the 
program size threshold of 25 new teachers in a title II reporting year 
(or such lower program size threshold that the State chooses to use). 
States would annually report performance results for these programs, 
using one of three methods. Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(A), a 
State could aggregate teacher preparation program performance data 
among teacher preparation programs that are operated by the same 
teacher preparation entity and are similar to or broader than the 
program. For example, if a teacher preparation entity had two different 
special education programs and both had 13 new teachers, the State 
could combine performance results of the two programs and report them 
as a single teacher preparation program with 26 new teachers, which 
would meet the program size threshold of 25 (or a lower program size 
threshold, at the State's discretion).
    Alternatively, under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(B), the State 
could report on a teacher preparation program's performance by 
aggregating performance data for that program over multiple years, up 
to a total of four years, until the size threshold is met. For example, 
if a teacher preparation program had ten new teachers each year, the 
State could combine performance results of that year with the results 
of the preceding two years and report the results as a single teacher 
preparation program with 30 new teachers, which would meet the program 
size threshold of 25 (or a lower program size threshold, at the State's 
discretion).
    Under Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(C), States also could use a combination 
of both of these methods if neither method alone would be sufficient to 
permit the State to meet the program size threshold (or for a State 
that chooses a lower program size threshold, to permit the State to 
meet the lower program size threshold) described in Sec.  
612.4(b)(4)(i).
    Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D) would allow States to refrain 
from reporting data on any program that cannot meet the program size 
threshold (or the State's lower program size threshold) for reporting 
using one of the three options.
    Finally, proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(E) would exempt States from 
reporting data under Sec.  612.4(b) on a particular teacher preparation 
program in cases where reporting of such data would be inconsistent 
with Federal or State privacy and confidentiality laws and regulations.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5)--Procedures for Assessing and Reporting 
Teacher Preparation Program Performance Data

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5), each State would be required to 
report, beginning on April 1, 2018, and every four years thereafter, 
and at any other time that the State makes substantive changes to 
either the weighting of the indicators or the procedures for assessing 
and reporting the performance of each teacher preparation program in 
the State described in Sec.  612.4(c)(2). These procedures would be 
established by the State in consultation with a group of stakeholders 
in accordance with Sec.  612.4(c)(1).

Proposed Sec.  612.4(c)--Fair and Equitable Methods

    To assist in the development of the State's procedures for 
assessing and reporting teacher preparation program performance, each 
State would be required under Sec.  612.4(c)(1) to consult with a 
representative group of stakeholders, including, at a minimum, 
representatives of leaders and faculty of traditional and alternative 
route teacher preparation programs; students of teacher preparation 
programs; superintendents; school board members; elementary and 
secondary school leaders and instructional staff; elementary and 
secondary school students and their parents; IHEs that serve high 
proportions of low-income or minority students, or English language 
learners; advocates for English language learners and students with 
disabilities; and officials of the State's standards board or other 
appropriate standards body. In developing its procedures in 
consultation with stakeholders as provided by Sec.  612.4(c)(1), each 
State would be required under Sec.  612.4(c)(2) to address (a) its 
weighting of the indicators identified in proposed Sec.  612.5, (b) its 
process for aggregating data such that all teacher preparation programs 
would be represented in the SRC, (c) State-level rewards or 
consequences associated with each teacher preparation program

[[Page 71828]]

designation, and (d) the method by which teacher preparation programs 
may challenge the accuracy of their performance data and program 
classification. Under proposed Sec.  612.4(c)(2), each State would also 
be required to examine the quality of the data collection and reporting 
activities it conducts and modify those activities as appropriate to 
improve deficiencies.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(d)--Inapplicability to Certain Insular Areas

    Proposed Sec.  612.4(d) would provide that the regulatory reporting 
requirements in Sec.  612.4(b) and (c) regarding indicators of academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills would not apply to the insular 
areas of American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana 
Islands, and the freely associated States of the Republic of the 
Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of 
Palau, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands.

Reasons

Proposed Sec.  612.4(a)--General State Report Card Reporting

    Proposed Sec.  612.4 would codify in regulations the statutory 
requirement that States that receive funds under the HEA report 
annually to the Secretary, in a SRC prescribed by the Secretary, on (1) 
the quality of all approved teacher preparation programs in the State 
for both traditional teacher preparation programs and alternative 
routes to State certification or licensure programs, and (2) basic data 
about teaching in the State, and make this information widely available 
to the general public.

Scope of Programs Covered by Reporting

    Because section 205(b)(1) of the HEA requires each State to report 
data on all teacher preparation programs in its State, we have included 
language in Sec.  612.4(a) to underscore that this requirement applies 
to all teacher preparation programs, regardless of whether they enroll 
students receiving Federal assistance under the HEA, or whether they 
are traditional or alternative route programs. Our goal is for States 
to report equivalent information needed for program improvement, 
transparency, and accountability for all teacher preparation programs 
in the State, including both traditional and alternative route 
programs. We invite comment specifically on whether the proposed 
regulation would adequately provide alternative route programs with the 
information about their participants and graduates that they need in 
order to facilitate program improvement, and whether the proposed 
regulation provides equivalent accountability for both traditional and 
alternative route programs.
    We are specifically interested in the potential scenario in which 
an IHE is deemed to be the ``teacher preparation entity,'' as defined 
in Sec.  612.2(d), for an alternative route program or provider in a 
particular State because the IHE is authorized by the State to 
recommend teacher candidates for certification, while the alternative 
route provider is not. We invite comment on whether, in such a 
scenario, the State would be able to report separately on the 
performance of alternative route program participants who are enrolled 
at an IHE-based teacher preparation program so as to provide sufficient 
transparency and accountability at the program level not only to the 
IHE-based teacher preparation program that is enrolling the alternative 
route program participants, but also to the alternative route program 
itself, which in this scenario would not be a teacher preparation 
entity as defined in Sec.  612.2. If commenters do not believe that a 
State could report separately on the performance of alternative route 
program participants, we invite comment on whether there are other 
data, or changes that should be made to the proposed regulations, that 
would provide adequate transparency and accountability for both the 
IHE-based teacher preparation program and the alternative route 
program, and whether States have the capacity to report such data.
    In addition, during the negotiated rulemaking process, some non-
Federal negotiators stated that it was not clear whether States had to 
report on the performance of distance education programs under this 
requirement. Non-Federal negotiators requested that we specify in the 
regulations that distance education programs must be included in a 
State's reporting. We have therefore included language in Sec.  
612.4(a) to clarify that, for purposes of State reporting, States must 
report on distance learning programs that are being provided in the 
State.
    Further, as addressed in our explanations for proposed Sec.  
612.4(b), annual State reporting of indicators and criteria for 
assessing program performance would extend to all teacher preparation 
programs--whether or not they are within IHEs. Section 205(b)(1)(F) of 
the HEA provides for such reporting only for programs within IHEs. 
However, the introductory language in section 205(b)(1) provides that 
the content of the SRC is not limited to the elements Congress has 
prescribed, and also expressly includes alternative route providers in 
the reporting system. Because the Secretary believes it is important 
that States report on the performance of all of their teacher 
preparation programs--including programs that are not based at IHEs--
using the same criteria, we propose to extend the State's reporting 
requirements in Sec. Sec.  612.4(b)(1) and 612.5 to cover all teacher 
preparation programs in the State.

Delayed Implementation Date and Revised Reporting Calendar

    Because the proposed regulations make changes to current State 
reporting obligations under title II of the HEA, we believe that it is 
appropriate to provide a year for States and institutions to design and 
set-up their data reporting systems. Such set-up would take place 
during the 2015-2016 academic year. During the negotiated rulemaking, a 
number of non-Federal negotiators indicated that the minimum amount of 
time States would need to set up the new processes and systems would be 
six months. Thus, this delay will provide sufficient time for States 
that do not already have the processes and systems necessary to 
implement the new reporting to develop processes and systems to do so. 
We are also proposing to implement a new reporting calendar. Currently, 
institutions report to States in April about data from the prior 
academic year, and States report to the Department the following 
October. Under these regulations, beginning in October 2017, we are 
proposing to require annual institutional reporting on data from the 
prior academic year in October of each calendar year, rather than April 
of the following calendar year, and annual State reporting in April of 
the following calendar year rather than October. We believe that this 
revised reporting calendar will ensure more timely feedback on program 
performance to programs and the public, and thus more rapid program 
improvement.

Pilot Reporting Year

    The system design and set-up period during the 2015-2016 academic 
year would be followed by a pilot reporting year for State report cards 
in April 2018. The pilot reporting year cycle would begin with the 
institutional report card in October 2017 (for data pertaining to IHE 
programs and new teachers in the 2016-2017 academic year) and the pilot 
State report card would be due in April 2018. During the pilot 
reporting year, States would publically report new data required by the 
regulations, but would

[[Page 71829]]

not be required to use the data to assign programs to one of four 
levels of performance (exceptional, effective, at-risk for low-
performing, or low-performing). As required by section 207(a) of the 
HEA, States would still be required to identify programs that are at-
risk of being low-performing or low-performing, but States would not be 
required to use the indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5 to make such 
determinations, although a State could do so at its option.
    Additionally, during the pilot reporting year, any State ratings of 
program performance would not have implications for that program's 
eligibility to participate in the TEACH Grant program. As discussed 
further under proposed Sec.  686.2 Definitions in the explanation of 
the term ``high-quality teacher preparation program,'' to ensure 
adequate time for program improvement, no program would be in danger of 
losing eligibility to participate in the TEACH Grant program until the 
program is rated as lower than ``effective'' for two out of the 
previous three reporting years. Thus, a program could first lose 
eligibility to participate in the TEACH Grant program in July, 2020, if 
the program received a rating of lower than ``effective'' in both the 
State's April 2019 and April 2020 report cards.
    In summary, the Department is proposing that pilot reporting by 
States under these regulations occur in the State report cards due in 
April 2018, over two years from the expected date that final 
regulations take effect in 2015, and that full reporting by States 
under these regulations for the State report cards begin in April 2019, 
over three years from the expected date that the final regulations take 
effect. Finally, the Department is proposing that programs would first 
be ineligible to participate in the TEACH Grant program in July 2020, 
if they receive two consecutive ratings of lower than ``effective'' 
under the proposed regulations, four years from the expected date the 
final regulations take effect. The following table summarizes the 
timeline for the implementation of the reporting requirements in the 
proposed regulations by teacher preparation program cohort and 
reporting year. The Department particularly invites comment on whether 
this timetable is reasonable.

                                                                  Implementation Dates
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                 --                            --                      --                      --                     --                     --
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Academic Year in which data systems  2015-16...............
 are designed and set up.
Academic year in which data is       ......................  2016-17...............  2017-18..............  2018-19..............  2019-20.
 collected.
Student Learning...................  ......................  C1....................  C1,2.................  C1,2,3...............  Rolling.
Job Placement......................  ......................  C1....................  C1,2.................  C1,2,3...............  Rolling.
Job Retention......................  ......................  C1....................  C1,2.................  C1,2,3...............  Rolling.
Program Completer Survey...........  ......................  C1....................  C2...................  C3...................  Rolling.
Cohort Employer (CE) Survey........  ......................  CE of C1..............  CE of C2.............  CE of C3.............  Rolling.
Year in Which Data Reported in       ......................  April 2018 Pilot        April 2019 Full        April 2020 Full        April 2021 Full
 State Report Card.                                           Report.                 Report.                Report.                Report.
                                                                    Required                Required               Required
                                                             Report all new data     Report all new data    Report all new data
                                                              required by             required by            required by
                                                              regulations.            regulations.           regulations.
                                                             Identify and report     Report 4-level         Report 4-level
                                                              low-performing or at-   program performance    program performance
                                                              risk programs (does     ratings based on new   ratings based on new
                                                              not have to be based    data.                  data.
                                                              on new data).          Ratings do not impact  Ratings could impact
                                                             Optional..............   TEACH Grant            TEACH Grant
                                                             Report program           eligibility for the    eligibility for 2020-
                                                              performance ratings     2019-2020 Award Year.  2021 Award Year (if
                                                              based on new data.                             second rating of
                                                                                                             lower than
                                                                                                             effective).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
C1: Cohort 1, graduates from teacher preparation program in 2016, earliest first year of teaching is 2016-2017 academic year.
C2: Cohort 2, graduates from teacher preparation program in 2017, earliest first year of teaching is 2017-2018 academic year.
C3: Cohort 3, graduates from teacher preparation program in 2018, earliest first year of teaching is 2018-2019 academic year.
CE: Cohort employer.

Making the State Report Card Available on the State's Web Site

    Non-Federal negotiators stated that it was reasonable to require 
States to make their report card information widely available to the 
general public by posting the information on the State Web site. We 
find this request reasonable in light of the statutory directive in 
section 205(a)(1) of the HEA. Accordingly, proposed Sec.  612.4(a)(2) 
would require the State to make its SRC information widely available to 
the general public by posting it on its Web site.

Program-Level Reporting

    Under the current title II reporting system, a teacher preparation 
program is defined as a State-approved course of study, the completion 
of which signifies that an enrollee has met all of the State's 
educational or training requirements for initial certification or 
licensure to teach in the State's elementary, middle, or secondary 
schools. A teacher preparation program may be either a traditional 
program or an alternative route to certification program, as defined by 
the State. It may be within or outside an IHE. Additionally, for the 
purposes of current title II reporting, all traditional teacher 
preparation programs at a single IHE are considered to be a single 
program. Likewise, under the current title II reporting system, all 
alternative route to initial teacher certification programs 
administered by any IHE or organization are considered to be a single 
program. As a result,

[[Page 71830]]

States (and IHEs in their own report cards) currently do not provide 
data on individual teacher preparation programs offered by a single 
IHE, such as an elementary education program or a secondary mathematics 
program.
    Many non-Federal negotiators stated that collecting and reporting 
data at the level of the individual teacher preparation program would 
assist IHEs and alternative route providers in improving specific 
programs. Reporting at this level would also aid prospective students 
and employers in making informed choices about the quality of 
particular teacher preparation programs. Non-Federal negotiators stated 
that reporting at the individual program level would prevent the 
dilution of data on individual program quality by the ``averaging'' 
effect of combined ratings for a number of teacher preparation programs 
within a single IHE or other teacher preparation program entity, and 
instead would reveal potential variations in program quality among 
different teacher preparation programs within a single IHE or entity.
    We agree with this view and believe that by requiring States to 
report on teacher preparation program performance at the individual 
program level, the proposed performance levels required under proposed 
Sec.  612.4(b)(1) would be more meaningful to IHEs and the public. 
Knowing the performance classification of an individual teacher 
preparation program, rather than simply the combined performance rating 
of all such programs at an IHE, also would be much more useful to IHEs 
in deciding where to focus improvement efforts, and much more useful to 
the public in choosing a teacher preparation program. In addition, 
identification of teacher preparation program performance at the 
individual program level (e.g., early education, elementary education 
program or a secondary mathematics program) is necessary so that 
eligibility to participate in the TEACH Grant program is linked to 
high-quality teacher preparation programs consistent with the statutory 
directive of title IV. Finally, program level reporting ensures that 
teacher preparation programs that prepare teachers to work in 
particular educational settings (e.g., teachers of students with 
disabilities or English Language Learners), receive their own focus and 
can be compared to like programs.
    For these reasons, we propose to require States to report on 
performance at the individual teacher preparation program level, rather 
than on the overall performance of all of an entity's teacher 
preparation programs. We would accomplish this by referring to a 
``teacher preparation program'' in proposed Sec.  612.4 (and elsewhere 
in part 612), and defining that term, as well as the term ``teacher 
preparation entity'' in Sec.  612.2, to differentiate between a program 
that leads to a specific State teacher certification in a specific 
field and an IHE or organization that is authorized by the State to 
prepare teachers.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)--Reporting of Information on Teacher 
Preparation Program Performance

    In proposed Sec.  612.4(b), we would identify the minimum content 
reporting requirements for the SRC. This regulatory approach differs 
from how the Department currently implements the statutory SRC 
requirements under the title II reporting system, under which specific 
reporting requirements are established solely through the review of 
public comment under the Paperwork Reduction Act. We propose to codify 
the substantive framework of a State's title II reporting obligations 
in new part 612 in order to clarify the effect these requirements would 
have, support TEACH program implementation, and to create a more 
meaningful reporting system to facilitate improvement in teacher 
preparation programs and services.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1)--Meaningful Differentiations in Teacher 
Preparation Program Performance

    Currently, States meet the reporting requirements that concern the 
quality of teacher preparation programs under title II of the HEA 
primarily by reporting and considering input-based measures (e.g., an 
admission criterion that asks whether a prospective student submits a 
resume). In fact, while States must report the criteria they use to 
identify programs that are low-performing or at-risk, the only data on 
program performance currently collected by the title II reporting 
system are input data. However, there is little empirical support to 
suggest that these measures are good predictors of a teacher's eventual 
success in the classroom.
    The Department believes that this input-based reporting provides 
insufficient information with which to differentiate among the quality 
of teacher preparation programs. Because the Department strongly 
believes that reporting on teacher preparation program quality should 
consider multiple measures, especially outcome measures, we have 
structured the State reporting requirements in Sec.  612.4(b) to 
require that States report criteria for assessing program performance 
that include specific outcome and input-based indicators proposed in 
Sec.  612.5. States would be required to report on their criteria for 
determining teacher preparation program performance and to 
differentiate teacher preparation program performance using these 
indicators. (We discuss our proposed outcome-based indicators in the 
preamble discussion related to proposed Sec.  612.5.)
    Specifically, under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), following a pilot 
reporting year in 2018, beginning in April 2019 and annually 
thereafter, States would be required to report a teacher preparation 
program's performance using at least four performance levels 
(``exceptional,'' ``effective,'' ``at-risk,'' or ``low-performing''). 
We have proposed that States use at least four performance levels 
because two of these levels (at-risk and low-performing) are already 
identified in section 207(a) of the HEA as levels on which States must 
report, and a third level is identified by title IV of HEA, which 
provides that to be eligible to distribute TEACH Grants, IHEs must 
provide ``high quality'' teacher preparation. Several non-Federal 
negotiators suggested that only having three classifications (i.e., 
low-performing, at-risk of being low-performing, and high-quality) 
would not allow for meaningful distinctions of quality. Therefore, 
several non-Federal negotiators suggested, and we agree, that to permit 
identification of the best programs, at least one additional 
classification should be created by States to ensure meaningful 
differentiation between programs whose performance is satisfactory and 
those whose performance is truly exceptional. For reasons explained 
under proposed Sec.  612.6, the Secretary proposes that employment 
outcomes for high-need schools and student learning outcomes be 
included, in significant part, in determining teacher preparation 
program performance.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(2)--Satisfactory or Higher Student Learning 
Outcomes for Programs Identified as Effective or Higher

    The Secretary proposes that States may identify the performance 
level for a teacher preparation program as effective or higher quality 
only if the program has satisfactory or higher student learning 
outcomes. The Secretary believes, and many non-Federal negotiators 
agreed, that a program's ability to train future teachers who produce 
positive results in student learning is a clear and important standard 
of teacher preparation program quality.

[[Page 71831]]

    In order to assess teacher preparation program performance in terms 
of student learning outcomes, States would need to collect data on 
student growth of students assigned to each new teacher, defined in 
proposed Sec.  612.2 as the change in student achievement for an 
individual student between two or more points in time. For student 
learning outcomes, data would be calculated by the State using a 
student growth measure, a teacher evaluation measure, or both.
    Because many States are adopting comprehensive teacher evaluation 
systems that consider student growth in significant part, as well as 
other measures of a teacher's instructional practice, we have proposed 
a definition of ``student learning outcomes'' in Sec.  612.2 that would 
give States the option of using the results of those evaluation systems 
in identifying a program's performance level. To ensure that States 
weigh student learning outcomes as a significant part of the system, 
the non-Federal negotiators proposed language with which the Secretary 
agreed. Under that language, as noted at the outset of this discussion, 
States could only identify the quality of a teacher preparation program 
as effective or higher if the State determined that the program's 
graduates produce student learning outcomes that are satisfactory or 
higher. The Department believes that this provision will encourage 
States to classify programs with the utmost integrity while still 
preserving State discretion as to the setting of performance levels.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)--Disaggregated Data, Assurances of 
Accreditation on Quality of Program Characteristics, Weighting, and 
Rewards and Consequences

    Section 205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA requires that a State provide a 
description of its criteria for assessing the performance of teacher 
preparation programs, which must include indicators of the academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of students enrolled in these 
programs. Section 207(a) requires the State to provide a list of IHEs 
with programs that are low-performing or at-risk of becoming low-
performing. We believe that these two requirements provide insufficient 
information about the quality of teacher preparation programs in a 
State and focus only on the negative. As noted in our discussion of 
proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), we believe States should be required to 
identify not only programs that are low-performers but also programs 
that are high-performers, with gradations of success, in order to 
recognize and reward excellence, help other programs learn from best 
practices, and facilitate faithful implementation of the TEACH Grant 
program.
    The Secretary further believes that to document the basis on which 
a State makes its determination of teacher preparation performance 
levels and to facilitate self-improvement by teacher preparation 
programs and entities, a State should be required to report data on 
each of the indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5, disaggregated for each 
teacher preparation program. These reports would include an assurance 
that the teacher preparation program is either accredited by a 
specialized agency recognized by the Secretary for accreditation of 
professional teacher education programs, or produces teacher candidates 
with content and pedagogical knowledge and quality clinical preparation 
who have met rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications. 
Non-Federal negotiators emphasized that specialized agencies base 
accreditation on these same factors regarding knowledge and entry and 
exit requirements, and thus, an assurance of such accreditation is 
tantamount to a State finding that the teacher preparation program has 
these other attributes.
    The availability of these data in State reports, which States and 
the Secretary would make available to the public, can help guide 
potential employers in their hiring decisions and prospective teachers 
in their application decisions. For example, a superintendent may be 
particularly interested in hiring teachers from programs with a history 
of placing teachers who stay in their positions. A prospective special 
education teacher may want to look at which special education programs 
in the State have the highest success rates in placing program 
graduates.
    More generally, the Secretary also believes that a State should be 
required to include in its State report card its weighting of the 
various indicators of program performance included in proposed Sec.  
612.5. This information will show how that State arrived at its overall 
assessment of a teacher preparation program's performance and provide a 
way for the Secretary and the public to understand the relative value 
that a State places on each of the indicators of program quality. This 
reporting also will be an important transparency tool that will permit 
programs and the general public to understand how States make their 
performance-level determinations.
    Lastly, the Secretary believes that as a further mechanism for 
making the State assessment of teacher preparation performance levels 
more meaningful, States should be required to identify any State-level 
rewards or consequences associated with each teacher preparation 
program performance level.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)--Reporting the Performance of All Teacher 
Preparation Programs

    Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(i) would require separate reporting of 
the performance of any teacher preparation program that annually 
produces 25 or more new teachers, and establishes permissible 
procedures for data aggregation that would result in reporting on all 
of the State's teacher preparation programs (except for those programs 
that are particularly small and for which aggregation procedures cannot 
be applied or where State or Federal privacy or confidentiality laws 
and regulations prevent it). In developing this proposed requirement, 
the Department considered the current processes used by States that 
already assess teacher preparation program performance using student 
growth data for students of new teachers from those programs. Those 
States use program size thresholds that range from as few as 10 to as 
many as 25 new teachers. The proposed regulations would set a program 
size threshold for reporting of 25, which we believe would ensure that 
each State will report results each year for the largest number of 
programs consistent with what the State would find to be logistically 
feasible and statistically valid. The Secretary specifically invites 
comment on an appropriate program size threshold.
    While proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4) would not require separate annual 
reporting on the effectiveness of individual teacher preparation 
programs that produce 24 or fewer new teachers, we recognize that some 
States may find it logistically feasible and statistically valid to 
establish a lower threshold, and may prefer to do so in order to 
recognize the quality of smaller teacher preparation programs. In order 
to encourage these States to do so, the provision would expressly 
permit a State to report the effectiveness of these smaller programs by 
allowing a State to set a program size threshold lower than 25.
    We also recognize, however, that the smaller the size of a teacher 
preparation program, the greater the challenge of generating data on 
program effectiveness that can be valid and reliable and meet the 
reporting threshold. Because we strongly believe that it is important 
that States report annually to the public, and to IHEs and other 
entities that operate teacher

[[Page 71832]]

preparation programs, on the quality of these smaller programs, we have 
proposed alternative methods through which States could report 
performance of programs that annually produce a number of new teachers 
that is fewer than 25 (or whatever lower program size threshold the 
State establishes). As proposed in Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(A)-(C), these 
methods involve annually meeting the program size threshold of 25 (or 
any lower threshold a State establishes) by aggregating performance 
data for each of these smaller programs with performance data (1) of 
like programs that the teacher preparation entity operates (thus, in 
effect, reporting on a broader-based teacher preparation program), (2) 
for the same program generated over multiple years for up to four 
years, or (3) generated under a combination of these first two methods. 
For this second method, we have proposed to set a four-year cap on the 
number of years over which such aggregation may occur so that the 
performance levels are not based on data that are too old to be a 
reflection of current program performance. The Department particularly 
invites comment on whether such a cap should exist, and if so, how many 
years should be aggregated to report data on a single program.
    We believe that a State's use of these alternative methods would 
produce more reliable and valid measures of quality for each of these 
smaller programs and reasonably balance the need annually to report on 
program performance with the special challenges of generating a 
meaningful annual snapshot of program quality for programs that 
annually produce few new teachers. Even with multiple options for 
reporting on smaller teacher preparation programs, we recognize that it 
is possible that some States will still be unable to aggregate the 
program performance data for some small programs based on a program 
size threshold of 25 or such lower size threshold as a State may 
establish. Through proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D), we would 
accommodate this situation by not requiring that a State include 
performance information on these particular programs in their annual 
State report until aggregation allows reporting with validity, 
reliability, accuracy, and integrity commensurate with the program size 
threshold of 25 or such lower threshold the State has chosen to use.
    Finally, we recognize that reporting data on program performance 
under Sec.  612.4(b)(4) could be inconsistent with Federal or State 
privacy and confidentiality laws or regulations. For example, in cases 
where a teacher is both a participant in an alternative route teacher 
preparation program and concurrently enrolled as a student in an IHE, 
data regarding that student/teacher could be considered education 
records and, therefore, implicate the Family Educational Rights and 
Privacy Act, 20 U.S.C. 1232g. Additionally, States may have privacy 
laws that protect employment records, including protections that could 
implicate data related to a number of the measures outlined in this 
proposed regulation. Because we do not intend the proposed regulations 
to require reporting that would be inconsistent with these other legal 
requirements, proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii)(E) would provide that a 
State would not need to report on the performance of a particular 
program in the SRC if doing so would be inconsistent with Federal or 
State privacy and confidentiality laws or regulations.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5)--Implementing Procedures Established by the 
State

    While requiring each State to report on both the level of 
performance of each teacher preparation program and the data the State 
used to determine the program's level of performance is important, so 
too is the transparency of the process the State used to make these 
determinations. For this reason, we propose in Sec.  612.4(b)(5) to 
have States report periodically on the procedures they used to make 
decisions about program performance. Specifically, we propose that 
States report annually (1) their procedures for assessing and reporting 
the performance of each teacher preparation program, (2) the weighting 
they apply to the indicators identified in proposed Sec.  612.5 to 
determine each teacher preparation program's resulting performance 
level, (3) their procedures under Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii) for aggregating 
data for small programs, (4) State-level rewards or consequences 
associated with the designated performance levels, and (5) their 
provision of appropriate opportunities for programs to challenge the 
accuracy of their performance data and classification of the program.
    We would require each State to report these procedures in its 
report card to be submitted by October 1, 2017, to inform the public at 
the outset how each State assessed teacher preparation program 
performance. We think it is reasonable to require States to review, and 
inform the public about any changes to, their procedures at least once 
every four years, and so would have the State report on this subject 
again every four years thereafter. In addition, to promote 
transparency, under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5)(ii), at any time a State 
made significant changes to its procedures for assessing program 
performance, we would have the State include a description of those 
significant changes in the next report card.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(c)--Fair and Equitable Methods

    Proposed Sec.  612.4(c)(1) would require that each State consult 
with a representative group of stakeholders when developing procedures 
for assessing and reporting the performance of each teacher preparation 
program in the State under Sec.  612.4. This wide-ranging consultation 
process was suggested by non-Federal negotiators as the best way for a 
State to develop fair and equitable procedures for assessing and 
reporting the performance of each teacher preparation program.
    Consistent with the non-Federal negotiators' recommendations, Sec.  
612.4(c)(1)(i) identifies those entities and groups that are likely to 
be affected by the way a State assesses and reports teacher preparation 
program performance under these proposed regulations. Those 
stakeholders would minimally include leaders and faculty of traditional 
and alternative route teacher preparation programs; students of teacher 
preparation programs; superintendents; school board members; elementary 
and secondary school leaders and instructional staff; elementary and 
secondary school students and their parents; IHEs that serve high 
proportions of low-income or minority students, or English language 
learners; advocates for English language learners and students with 
disabilities; and officials of the State's standards board or other 
appropriate standards body. Each State would consult with these 
stakeholders as it develops its system and makes decisions about its 
procedures for assessing and reporting teacher preparation program 
performance. The Secretary also agrees with many non-Federal 
negotiators that requiring States to have a process by which teacher 
preparation programs can challenge data accuracy and performance-level 
classification, and to consult with stakeholders on that process, will 
help to ensure fair and equitable treatment of teacher preparation 
programs and the reliability, validity, integrity, and accuracy of the 
data reported about such programs.
    Proposed Sec.  612.4(c)(2) would require each State to examine the 
quality of its data collection and reporting activities and to modify 
the data collection and reporting activities, as appropriate. We

[[Page 71833]]

developed these proposed regulatory provisions in response to feedback 
received during the negotiated rulemaking sessions. A number of non-
Federal negotiators suggested that we build into our regulations this 
type of State review process to ensure the continued fairness of the 
process for collecting and analyzing data required under Sec. Sec.  
612.4(b) and 612.5, and thereby further promote the reliability, 
validity, integrity, and accuracy of the data relating to teacher 
preparation program quality reported in the SRC.

Proposed Sec.  612.4(d)--Inapplicability to Certain Insular Areas

    Finally, we propose that the reporting requirements in Sec.  
612.4(b) and (c) regarding reporting of a teacher preparation program's 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills would not 
apply to the insular areas of American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the 
Northern Mariana Islands, the freely associated states of the Republic 
of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the 
Republic of Palau, Guam and the United States Virgin Islands. We 
believe that these entities are so small that the cost of reporting 
data relating to these entities' small teacher preparation programs is 
unwarranted.
Sec.  612.5 What indicators must a State use to report on teacher 
preparation program performance for purposes of the State report card?
    Statute: Section 205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA requires each State to 
include in its State report card a description of the State's criteria 
for assessing the performance of teacher preparation programs within 
IHEs in the State. This provision further requires that the criteria 
include indicators of the academic content knowledge and teaching 
skills of students enrolled in the teacher preparation programs. 
Section 200(23) of the HEA defines the term ``teaching skills'' as 
those skills that enable a teacher, among other competencies, to 
effectively convey and explain academic content. Each State must report 
the information identified in section 205(b)(1)(F) to the Secretary and 
make it widely available to the general public in a uniform and 
comprehensible manner that conforms to the definitions and methods 
established by the Secretary.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: Proposed Sec.  612.5(a) would require that, 
for reporting purposes under proposed Sec.  612.4, a State must assess, 
for each teacher preparation program in the State, indicators of 
academic content knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers or 
recent graduates from that program. As discussed earlier in this 
preamble, we would define the term ``new teacher'' to mean a recent 
graduate or alternative route participant who, within the last three 
title II reporting years, has received a level of certification or 
license that allows him or her to serve in that State as a teacher of 
record for K-12 students and, at a State's discretion, for preschool 
students (see proposed Sec.  612.2(d)). We would define ``recent 
graduate'' to mean an individual whom a teacher preparation program has 
documented as having met all the requirements of a teacher preparation 
program within the last three title II reporting years, without regard 
to whether the individual has passed a licensure examination, been 
hired as a full-time teacher, or been recommended to the State for 
initial certification or licensure (see proposed Sec.  612.2(d)).
    In proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(1) through (a)(4), we identify those 
indicators that a State would be required to use to assess the academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers from each of the 
teacher preparation programs in the State's jurisdiction. While a State 
would be able to use additional indicators and establish its own ``cut-
scores,'' it would be required to use the following indicators of 
teacher preparation program performance: (i) Student learning outcomes 
(ii) employment outcomes, (iii) survey outcome data, and (iv) an 
assurance that the program is accredited by a specialized accreditation 
entity recognized by the Secretary for accreditation of professional 
teacher education programs, or an assurance by the State that the 
teacher preparation program provides teacher candidates with content 
and pedagogical knowledge and quality clinical preparation who have met 
rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications. In proposed 
Sec.  612.2(d), we would define several key terms used in proposed 
Sec.  612.5(a), including ``student learning outcomes,'' ``employment 
outcomes,'' ``survey outcomes,'' ``content and pedagogical knowledge,'' 
``quality clinical preparation,'' and ``rigorous teacher candidate 
entry and exit qualifications.''
Student Learning Outcomes
    The first required indicator of academic content knowledge and 
teaching skills would be student learning outcomes (see proposed Sec.  
612.5(a)(1)). ``Student learning outcomes'' would be defined as data on 
the aggregate learning outcomes of students taught by new teachers (as 
that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) trained by each teacher 
preparation program in the State. The State would choose to calculate 
the data on student learning outcomes using measures of student growth 
(as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), teacher evaluation 
measures (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), or both.
    Definitions of ``student growth'' and ``teacher evaluation 
measure'' would also be added to proposed Sec.  612.2. ``Student 
growth'' would be defined as the change in student achievement in 
tested grades and subjects and the change in student achievement in 
non-tested grades and subjects for an individual student between two or 
more points in time. This could be a simple comparison of achievement 
between two points in time or a more complex ``value-added model'' \3\ 
that some States already use to assess teacher preparation program 
performance based on levels of student growth associated with new 
teachers from those programs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ A value-added model is a statistical technique developed by 
researchers to estimate a teacher's unique contribution to student 
achievement. Briefly, VAM predicts (estimates) student achievement 
based on prior student test scores and other observable 
characteristics and then takes the difference between the predicted 
student test score and the actual student score and attributes this 
difference to the teacher.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For the purpose of determining student growth, definitions of 
``student achievement in tested grades and subjects'' and ``student 
achievement in non-tested grades and subjects'' would also be included 
in proposed Sec.  612.2. Under the former, for grades and subjects in 
which assessments are required under section 1111(b)(3) of the ESEA, 
student achievement would be determined using (a) a student's score on 
the State's assessments under section 1111(b)(3) of the ESEA, and, (b) 
as appropriate, other measures of student learning described in the 
definition of ``student achievement in non-tested grades and subjects'' 
that are rigorous and comparable across schools and consistent with 
State requirements.
    Under the definition of ``student achievement in non-tested grades 
and subjects,'' for grades and subjects that do not require assessments 
under section 1111(b)(3) of the ESEA, student achievement would be 
determined by measures of student learning and performance, such as 
students' results on pre-tests and end-of-course-tests, objective 
performance-based assessments, student learning objectives, student 
performance on English language proficiency assessments, and other 
measures of

[[Page 71834]]

student achievement, that are rigorous and comparable across schools 
and consistent with State requirements.
    In order to create as much consistency as possible for States, 
LEAs, and other entities that work with the Department of Education, 
these definitions are nearly identical to the ones used in other 
Department initiatives, including ESEA flexibility,\4\ the Teacher 
Incentive Fund, and the Race to the Top program.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ On September 23, 2011, the Department invited each State 
educational agency (SEA) to request flexibility on behalf of itself, 
its LEAs, and schools, in order to better focus on improving student 
learning and increasing the quality of instruction. This voluntary 
opportunity has provided to educators and State and local leaders 
flexibility regarding specific requirements of the Elementary and 
Secondary Education Act (ESEA) in exchange for rigorous and 
comprehensive State-developed plans designed to improve educational 
outcomes for all students, close achievement gaps, increase equity, 
and improve the quality of instruction. In particular, States 
requesting flexibility committed to, by the 2014-15 school year, 
developing, adopting, piloting, and implementing teacher and 
principal evaluation and support systems that, among other things, 
use multiple valid measures in determining performance levels, 
including as a significant factor data on student growth for all 
students. As of September 1, 2014, the Secretary has granted 43 
States, the District of Columbia, California Office to Reform 
Education (CORE), and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico flexibility on 
key provisions of the ESEA in exchange for State-developed plans to 
prepare all students for college and career, focus aid on the 
neediest students, and support effective teaching and leadership. 
States with waivers include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, 
Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, 
Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, 
Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, 
New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, 
Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South 
Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and 
Wisconsin. Three additional requests, from Iowa, Wyoming, and the 
Department of the Interior's Bureau of Indian Education, are still 
under review.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Under the proposed definition of ``student learning outcomes'' in 
proposed Sec.  612.2, a State would be permitted to choose an 
alternative approach to calculating data on aggregate student learning 
outcomes of students using a ``teacher evaluation measure.'' We would 
define a ``teacher evaluation measure'' as the percentage of new 
teachers (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), by grade 
span and subject level, rated at each performance level under an LEA 
teacher evaluation system consistent with statewide parameters that 
differentiates teachers on an annual basis using at least three 
performance levels and multiple valid measures in determining the 
performance levels. For the purpose of this definition, ``multiple 
valid measures'' of performance level would include data on student 
growth (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) for all 
students as a significant factor as well as observations based on 
rigorous teacher performance standards and other measures of 
professional practice.
Employment Outcomes
    The second indicator of the academic content knowledge and teaching 
skills of new teachers and recent graduates would be their employment 
outcomes (see proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2)). Under proposed Sec.  
612.2(d), we would define ``employment outcomes'' to include the 
teacher placement rate (as the term ``teacher placement rate would be 
defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), the teacher placement rate calculated for 
high-need schools (as the term ``high-need schools'' would be defined 
in Sec.  612.2(d)), the teacher retention rate (as that term would be 
defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), and the teacher retention rate calculated 
for high-need schools (as the term ``high-need schools'' would be 
defined in Sec.  612.2(d)). The Department proposes to include in Sec.  
612.2(d) definitions for the terms ``teacher placement rate,'' 
``teacher retention rate,'' and ``high-need school.''
    ``Teacher placement rate'' would be defined as the combined non-
duplicated percentage (calculated annually and pursuant to Sec.  
612.5(a)) of new teachers (as that term would be defined in Sec.  
612.2(d)) and recent graduates (as that term would be defined in Sec.  
612.2(d)) who have been hired in a full-time teaching position for the 
grade level, span, and subject area in which the teachers were 
prepared. Under this definition, one or more of the following could, at 
the State's discretion, be excluded from the calculation of teacher 
placement rate, provided that the State uses a consistent approach to 
assess and report on all of its preparation programs: (a) New teachers 
or recent graduates who have taken teaching positions in another State, 
(b) new teachers or recent graduates who have taken teaching positions 
in private schools, (c) new teachers or recent graduates who have taken 
teaching positions that do not require State certification, or (d) new 
teachers or recent graduates who have enrolled in graduate school or 
entered military service.
    ``Teacher retention rate'' would be defined as any of the following 
three rates (calculated annually and pursuant to Sec.  612.5(a)) as 
determined by the State, provided that the State uses a consistent 
approach to assess and report on all teacher preparation programs in 
the State. The first rate would be the percentage of new teachers (as 
that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) who have been hired in 
full-time teaching positions and who have served for periods of at 
least three consecutive school years within five years of being granted 
a level of certification that allows them to serve as teachers of 
record. The second rate would be the percentage of new teachers who 
have been hired in full-time teaching positions and reached a level of 
tenure or other equivalent measure of retention within five years of 
being granted a level of certification that allows them to serve as 
teachers of record. The third rate would be one hundred percent less 
the percentage of new teachers who have been hired in full-time 
teaching positions and whose employment was not continued by their 
employer for reasons other than budgetary constraints within five years 
of being granted a level of certification that allows the teachers to 
serve as teachers of record. In addition, under this proposed 
definition of ``teacher retention rate,'' a State would have the 
discretion to exclude one or more of the following from the calculation 
of the teacher retention rate, provided that the State uses a 
consistent approach to assess and report on all of its teacher 
preparation programs: (a) New teachers who have taken teaching 
positions in other States, (b) new teachers who have taken teaching 
positions in private schools, (c) new teachers who are not retained due 
to market conditions or circumstances particular to the LEA and beyond 
the control of teachers or schools, or (d) new teachers who have 
enrolled in graduate school or entered military service.
    ``High-need school'' would be defined by using the definition of 
``high-need school'' from section 200(11) of the HEA. Specifically, 
under proposed Sec.  612.2(d), ``high-need school'' would be defined as 
a school that, based on the most recent data available, meets one or 
both of the following definitions. First, a ``high-need school'' is in 
the highest quartile of schools in a ranking of all schools served by a 
local educational agency, ranked in descending order by percentage of 
students from low-income families enrolled in such schools, as 
determined by the local educational agency based on a single or a 
composite of two or more of the following measures of poverty: (a) The 
percentage of students aged 5 through 17 in poverty counted; (b) the 
percentage of students eligible for a free or reduced price school 
lunch under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act; (c) the 
percentage of students in families receiving assistance under the State 
program funded under part A of title IV of the Social Security Act; and 
(d) the percentage of students eligible to receive medical assistance 
under the Medicaid

[[Page 71835]]

program. Additionally, or alternatively, a school may be considered a 
``high-need school,'' if, in the case of an elementary school, the 
school serves students not less than 60 percent of whom are eligible 
for a free or reduced price school lunch under the Richard B. Russell 
National School Lunch Act; or in the case of any other school that is 
not an elementary school, the other school serves students not less 
than 45 percent of whom are eligible for a free or reduced price school 
lunch under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act.
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) would clarify that, in using the 
employment outcomes measure as an indicator of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers and recent graduates, a 
State could, at its discretion, assess traditional and alternative 
route teacher preparation programs differently based on whether there 
are differences in the programs that affect employment outcomes, 
provided that varied assessments result in equivalent levels of 
accountability and reporting.
Survey Outcomes
    The third indicator of the academic content knowledge and teaching 
skills of new teachers produced by a teacher preparation program would 
be survey outcome data (see proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(3)). Under proposed 
Sec.  612.2(d), we would define the term ``survey outcomes'' as 
qualitative and quantitative data collected through survey instruments, 
including, but not limited to, a teacher survey (as that term would be 
defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) and an employer survey (as that term would 
be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)), designed to capture perceptions of 
whether new teachers (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) 
who are employed as teachers in their first year of teaching in the 
State where the teacher preparation program is located have the skills 
needed to succeed in the classroom.
    ``Teacher survey'' would be defined as a survey of new teachers (as 
that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) serving in full-time 
teaching positions for the grade level, span, and subject area in which 
the teachers were prepared that is designed to capture their 
perceptions of whether the preparation that they received was 
effective.
    ``Employer survey'' would be defined as a survey of employers or 
supervisors designed to capture their perceptions of whether the new 
teachers (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)) they employ 
or supervise, who attended teacher preparation programs in the State 
where the teachers are employed or supervised, were effectively 
prepared.
Accreditation or State Approval To Provide Teacher Candidates With 
Content and Pedagogical Knowledge and Quality Clinical Preparation and 
as Having Rigorous Teacher Candidate Entry and Exit Qualifications
    The fourth indicator of academic content knowledge and teaching 
skills of a program's new teachers, reflected in proposed Sec.  
612.5(a)(4), would be a determination of whether (a) the teacher 
preparation program is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency 
recognized by the Secretary for accreditation of professional teacher 
education programs or, alternatively, (b) that the program:
     Produces teacher candidates with content and pedagogical 
knowledge (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d));
     Produces teacher candidates with quality clinical 
preparation (as that term would be defined in Sec.  612.2(d)); and
     Produces teacher candidates who have met rigorous teacher 
candidate entry and exit qualifications (as that term would be defined 
in Sec.  612.2(d)).
    To implement this requirement, the Department proposes to include 
in proposed Sec.  612.2(d) definitions of the terms ``content and 
pedagogical knowledge,'' ``quality clinical preparation,'' and 
``rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications.''
    ``Content and pedagogical knowledge'' would be defined as an 
understanding of (a) the central concepts and structures of the 
discipline in which a teacher has been trained, and (b) how to create 
effective learning experiences that make the discipline accessible and 
meaningful for all students, including a distinct set of instructional 
skills to address the needs of English language learners and students 
with disabilities, in order to assure mastery of the content by the 
students, as described in applicable professional, State, or 
institutional standards.
    ``Quality clinical preparation'' would be defined as training that 
integrates content, pedagogy, and professional coursework around a core 
of pre-service clinical experiences that at a minimum must (a) be 
provided, at least in part, by qualified clinical instructors who meet 
established qualification requirements and who use a training standard 
that is made publicly available; (b) include multiple clinical or field 
experiences, or both, that serve diverse, rural, or underrepresented 
student populations, including English language learners and students 
with disabilities, and that are assessed using a performance-based 
protocol to demonstrate candidate mastery of content and pedagogy; and 
(c) require that teacher candidates use research-based practices, 
including observation and analysis of instruction, collaboration with 
peers, and effective use of technology for instructional purposes.
    ``Rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications'' would 
be defined as teacher candidate qualifications established by a teacher 
preparation program using, at a minimum--(a) rigorous entrance 
requirements based on multiple measures, and (b) rigorous exit criteria 
based on an assessment of candidate performance that relies on 
validated professional teaching standards and measures of candidate 
effectiveness including, at a minimum, measures of curriculum planning, 
instruction of students, appropriate plans and modifications for all 
students, and assessment of student learning.
Other Indicators Predictive of a Teacher's Effect on Student 
Performance
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(b), among the indicators of academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers and recent 
graduates it uses for purposes of reporting each teacher preparation 
program's performance under Sec.  612.4, a State could, at its 
discretion, include other indicators predictive of a teacher's effect 
on student performance, such as student survey results, provided that 
the State uses a consistent approach for all of its teacher preparation 
programs.
    Just as we exclude American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern 
Mariana Islands, the freely associated states of the Republic of the 
Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of 
Palau, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands from reporting on the 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills used to 
determine a program's level of performance in proposed Sec.  612.4(b) 
and (c), proposed Sec.  612.5(c) makes the required use of the 
indicators described in proposed Sec.  612.5(a) and (b) inapplicable to 
these jurisdictions as well.
Summary of Proposed Sec.  612.5
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5, in determining the performance of each 
teacher preparation program, each State (except for insular areas 
identified in proposed Sec.  612.5(c)) would need to use student 
learning outcomes, employment outcomes, survey outcomes, and the 
program characteristics described above as its indicators of academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of the

[[Page 71836]]

program's new teachers or recent graduates. In addition, the State 
could use other indicators of its choosing, provided the State uses a 
consistent approach for all of its teacher preparation programs and 
these other indicators are predictive of a teacher's effect on student 
performance. Also, as discussed above under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), 
each State would need to classify the performance of each teacher 
preparation program using at least four performance levels--low-
performing, at-risk, effective, and exceptional--and meaningfully 
differentiate those classification levels.
    Reasons:
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a) would define how each State would implement 
its statutory responsibility to include in its report card a 
description of the criteria the State uses to assess the performance of 
teacher preparation programs in the State, which must include 
indicators of the academic content knowledge and teaching skills of 
students enrolled in the teacher preparation programs. (See section 
205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA.) Proposed Sec.  612.5(b) would also describe 
other indicators that a State would be permitted to use to evaluate the 
program's performance, which could include any indicator that is 
predictive of the effect of the new teachers it produces on student 
performance. We define these other indicators in this way consistent 
with the general agreement of non-Federal negotiators that the true 
performance of any teacher preparation program should be assessed in 
terms of how well the teachers it produces perform.
    In defining these indicators of teacher preparation program 
performance in this way, the Department would be (1) exercising its 
responsibility under section 205(b) of the HEA to have States report 
``in a uniform and comprehensible manner that conforms with the 
definitions [of terms] and methods established by the Secretary''; (2) 
establishing those indicators of academic content knowledge and 
teaching skills that would best ensure the reliability, validity, 
integrity, and accuracy of the data submitted in the SRCs consistent 
with section 205(c) of the HEA; and (3) ensuring that States and IHEs 
use fair and equitable methods in reporting the data required by the 
IRC and SRC consistent with section 208(a) of the HEA. Moreover, we are 
proposing that States base their assessment of a teacher preparation 
program's performance on all of these measures of new teachers' and 
recent graduates' academic content knowledge and teaching skills 
because, as explained in the discussion of each measure that follows, 
each measure offers a different lens on whether the program has 
succeeded in providing new teachers and recent graduates with the 
content knowledge and teaching skills they need, and because the 
Department believes that using multiple measures provides more valid 
and reliable assessments of program quality. In implementing this 
proposed requirement, States would exercise their own reasonable 
discretion on just how these measures would be implemented and weighted 
in order to determine performance levels.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5, the Department would require that each 
State utilize these indicators for ``new teachers'' and, where 
applicable, ``recent graduates'' who have completed any teacher 
preparation program in its State. As explained previously, in proposed 
Sec.  612.2 we would define a ``new teacher'' as a recent graduate or 
alternative route participant who, within the last three title II 
reporting years, received a level of certification or licensure that 
would allow him or her to serve in the State as a teacher of record for 
K-12 students and, at the State's discretion, for preschool students. 
We would define ``recent graduate'' as an individual whom a teacher 
preparation program has documented as meeting all the program's 
requirements within the last three title II reporting years, without 
regard to whether the individual has been hired as a full-time teacher, 
has passed a licensure examination, or has been recommended to the 
State for initial certification or licensure.
    We propose this definition of ``recent graduate'' because an 
individual could meet all of a teacher preparation program's 
requirements, but never be hired as a full-time teacher or be 
recommended to the State for initial certification or licensure. This 
distinction between new teachers and recent graduates is necessary in 
order to accurately track teacher placement rates. Without this 
distinction, a State could define a ``recent graduate'' as including 
only those who have received their teaching license or certificate and 
begun to teach, thereby nullifying the intended ability of that 
indicator to capture a program's ability to prepare teacher candidates 
who actually go on to become teachers.
    In the following paragraphs, we explain our rationale for proposing 
the specific indicators we have included in proposed Sec.  612.5, why 
we believe they are valid and reliable indicators of the academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of teacher preparation program 
graduates, and why we believe these required and optional State 
indicators proposed in Sec.  612.5(b) will reflect with integrity the 
level of the program's performance.
Rationale for Student Learning Outcomes
    The Secretary believes that student learning outcomes should be 
included in the criteria States report and use under section 
205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA to determine teacher preparation program 
performance. That provision requires each State to identify in its 
report card the criteria it is using to identify the performance of 
each teacher preparation program within an IHE in the State, including 
its indicators of the academic knowledge and teaching skills of the 
program's students. We would supplement the required content of the SRC 
by having States report this same information for all teacher 
preparation programs in the State--whether operated by an IHE or 
another entity.
    Research from Tennessee and the State of Washington has shown that 
a teacher's preparation program has a significant effect on the 
learning gains of a teacher's Kindergarten through 12th grade (K-12) 
students. In Tennessee, for example, the most effective teacher 
preparation programs produced graduates who were two to three times 
more likely to be in the top quintile of teacher effectiveness scores 
in the State, while the least effective programs produced graduates who 
were two to three times more likely to be in the bottom quintile. In 
Washington, the top-performing teacher preparation programs produced 
new teachers who, on average, raised K-12 student achievement by an 
amount equal to levels seen in classes that are 20 percent smaller. In 
both of these States, as well as in Louisiana and North Carolina, which 
also track data linking student growth to the programs where the 
students' teachers were prepared, some teacher preparation programs 
consistently produce new teachers who are able to achieve strong 
student learning gains, while other programs consistently produce 
teachers associated with lower levels of growth. We believe that 
evidence from these States provides a strong basis for including 
student learning outcomes as an indicator of academic content knowledge 
and teaching skills of teachers produced by a teacher preparation 
program.\5\
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    \5\ See, for example, Tennessee Higher Education Commission, 
``Report Card on the Effectiveness of Teacher Training Programs,'' 
Nashville, TN (2010); Dan Goldhaber, et al. ``The Gateway to the 
Profession: Assessing Teacher Preparation Programs Based on Student 
Achievement.'' Economics of Education Review, 34 (2013), pp. 29-44.

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[[Page 71837]]

    We believe that for the purpose of title II reporting, States are 
well positioned to be able to include by April 1, 2018, student growth 
in tested grades and subjects of the new teachers that come from the 
program in the data they annually report on a teacher preparation 
program, and be able to incorporate student learning outcomes into the 
program's overall performance measure by April 1, 2019. For example, 
all 50 States and the District of Columbia received State Fiscal 
Stabilization Fund (SFSF) awards designed to fund, in part, the 
collection and reporting of student growth data relating to individual 
teachers in tested grades and subjects by the end of 2013. We believe 
this will enable States to meet the April 1, 2018, reporting deadline 
for student growth in tested grades and subjects, as the 2018 SRC will 
report primarily on data from the 2016-2017 academic year.
    Having identified student learning outcomes as a required indicator 
in proposed Sec.  612.5(a), we have proposed a definition that includes 
relevant data on student growth, which States could reliably use to 
assess the academic content knowledge and the teaching skills of new 
teachers. In particular, we are mindful of the definition of the term 
``teaching skills'' in section 200(23) of the HEA, which includes those 
skills that enable a teacher to increase student learning, achievement, 
the ability to apply knowledge, and to effectively convey and explain 
academic subject matter. Our proposed indicator of student learning 
outcomes reflects both of these key aspects of the definition of 
``teaching skills,'' which is itself an important element of the 
criteria required by section 205(b)(1)(F) for assessing teacher 
preparation program performance.
    Specifically, under this measure as defined in proposed Sec.  
612.2(d), States would calculate a program's student learning outcomes 
for each new teacher using (1) aggregate student growth data for 
students taught by new teachers, (2) a teacher evaluation measure that 
as defined in Sec.  612.2(d) must, in significant part, include data on 
student growth for all students, or (3) both. Where a State has already 
adopted measures of student growth as part of a comprehensive teacher 
evaluation system, we would permit the State to build its indicators of 
academic content knowledge and teaching skills linked to student 
learning outcomes from data provided by these existing teacher 
evaluation systems. In this regard, we believe that comprehensive 
teacher evaluations provide richer and more accurate information on 
teacher quality than student growth data alone. Our proposed definition 
of ``teacher evaluation measure'' would ensure that these evaluations 
are meaningful by requiring that they (1) differentiate teachers on a 
regular basis using at least three performance levels, (2) use multiple 
valid measures in determining each teacher's performance level, and (3) 
include, as a significant factor, data on student growth for all 
students and other measures of professional practice. We recognize that 
not all State evaluation systems currently meet our proposed 
definition, and that States may prefer to use a stand-alone measure of 
student growth. Alternatively, or in addition, provided that a State's 
existing measures of student growth are part of a comprehensive teacher 
evaluation system, a State may use the results of its teacher 
evaluation system as its indicator of student learning outcomes.
Rationale for Employment Outcomes
    The employment outcomes indicator in proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) 
would measure the effectiveness of a teacher preparation program in 
carrying out another of its pivotal missions--preparing and placing 
recent graduates as new teachers consistent with local school needs. 
Under our proposed regulatory framework, a program's employment 
outcomes would be determined based on its teacher placement rate, 
teacher placement rate calculated for high-need schools, teacher 
retention rate, and teacher retention rate calculated for high-need 
schools. These measures would identify the extent to which a program is 
successfully placing new teachers who stay in the profession. The 
requirement to report disaggregated employment outcome measures for 
high-need schools reflects the need to ensure transparency about which 
programs are encouraging placement at high-need schools and which 
schools' recent graduates are succeeding in these placements as 
reflected by retention rates.
    We believe that the use of the employment outcomes indicator is 
necessary for assessing the effectiveness of teacher preparation 
programs for several reasons. The goal of teacher preparation programs 
is to provide prospective teachers with the skills and knowledge needed 
to pursue a teaching career and remain successfully employed as a 
teacher, and to produce graduates who meet the needs of local 
educational agencies. Therefore, the rate at which a program's 
graduates become and remain employed as teachers is a critical 
indicator of program quality for prospective students, as well as 
policymakers and the general public. Acknowledging this, non-federal 
negotiators suggested including teacher placement and retention as 
indicators of program performance because such measures reflect 
employment outcomes for teacher preparation programs consistent with 
local educational agency needs.
    We understand that teacher placement rates and teacher retention 
rates are affected by some considerations outside of the program's 
control. Individual teachers may decide to leave the teaching 
profession either before they begin to teach or afterwards. Such 
decisions may be due to family considerations, working conditions at 
their school, or other reasons that do not necessarily reflect upon the 
quality of their teacher preparation program or the level of content 
knowledge and teaching skills of the program's graduates. However, we 
believe that programs that persistently produce teachers who fail to 
find jobs or, once teaching, fail to remain in teaching, may not be 
providing the level of content knowledge and teaching skills that new 
teachers need to succeed in the classroom. Correspondingly, we believe 
that high placement and retention rates suggest that a teacher 
preparation program's graduates do have the requisite content knowledge 
and teaching skills that enable them to demonstrate sufficient 
competency to find a job, earn positive reviews, and stay in the 
profession.
    This view is also evidenced by higher education accrediting 
agencies' use of employment outcomes as an indicator of program 
performance. For example, in 2013, the Council for the Accreditation of 
Educator Preparation (CAEP) adopted new accreditation standards and 
annual monitoring and reporting requirements, which include the 
``ability of completers to be hired in education positions for which 
they were prepared'' as a measure of program outcome and consumer 
information.\6\ The rate of teacher retention is thus included in the 
accreditation standards and the accompanying report urges 
``collaboration with States on preparation measures of common interest, 
such as employment and retention rates.'' Several other institutional 
and programmatic accrediting agencies also use employment outcomes to 
assess a program's quality, including the American Bar Association and 
the Council on Education for Public Health. In addition, some States 
use

[[Page 71838]]

employment outcomes in performance-based higher education funding 
formulas.\7\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, 
``Annual Reporting and CAEP Monitoring,'' (2013). http://caepnet.org/accreditation/standards/annual-reporting-and-caep-monitoring/.
    \7\ Southern Regional Education Board, ``Essential Elements of 
State Policy for College Completion: Outcomes-Based Funding,'' 
(2012). http://publications.sreb.org/2012/Outcomes_Based_Funding.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Congress has also recognized the importance of employment outcome 
information in connection with higher education programs generally, 
including with respect to teacher preparation programs specifically. 
For example, under section 485(a)(1)(R) of the HEA, institutions ``must 
make available to current and prospective students information 
regarding the placement in employment of, and types of employment 
obtained by, graduates of the institution's degree or certificate 
programs.'' In addition, ``an institution that advertises job placement 
rates as a means of recruiting students to enroll must make these rates 
available to prospective students, at or before the time the 
prospective student applies for enrollment.'' \8\ Additionally, the 
Title II Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) Program requires, under 
section 204(a)(2) of the HEA, that grant applicants establish an 
evaluation plan that includes strong and measurable performance 
objectives, including objectives and measures for ``increasing teacher 
retention in the first three years of a teacher's career.'' In addition 
to TQP, retention metrics are included in the statutory requirements 
for several Department grant programs such as Transition to Teaching, 
Teachers for a Competitive Tomorrow, and the National Professional 
Development Program.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \8\ National Postsecondary Education Cooperative, ``Information 
Required to Be Disclosed Under the Higher Education Act of 1965: 
Suggestions for Dissemination (Updated),'' Washington, DC. (2009). 
http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2010/2010831rev.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Congress has also included statutory requirements intended to 
ensure that teacher preparation programs produce new teachers who will 
address areas of need in local educational agencies and States. 
Congress's expectations are manifested in statutory requirements that 
each program provide assurances to the Secretary in its IRC that it is 
training prospective teachers to fill these needs (sections 
205(a)(1)(A)(ii) and 206 of the HEA). Specifically, IHEs that conduct 
teacher preparation programs are required to provide an assurance in 
the institutional report card that the IHE is providing training to 
prospective teachers that ``responds to the identified needs of the 
local educational agencies or States where the institution's graduates 
are likely to teach based on past hiring and recruitment trends.''
    The Department believes that teacher placement and retention data 
can provide important information on whether there is a labor market 
alignment between the new teachers and the teacher preparation 
program's ability to place teachers in areas of teacher shortage and 
high-need fields and in schools serving high-need populations. 
Currently, research shows that there are important mismatches in the 
teacher labor market. For example, one study found that there is a 
sufficient supply of qualified teachers to compensate for teacher 
turnover in English, but not for math and science. Additionally, 
principals were roughly ten percentage points more likely to report 
serious difficulties filling math and science vacancies than English 
vacancies.\9\ New York State also reported that while elementary 
education accounted for 44 percent of the initial teaching 
certifications awarded, only 17 percent of certified program completers 
received an elementary and early childhood job placement in the State 
within two years. This contrasts with an in-subject placement rate of 
63 percent for teachers of foreign languages, 59 percent for teachers 
of English as a second language, and 50 percent for secondary science 
teachers, suggesting a significant demand and supply mismatch by 
teaching area in the State.\10\ The Department believes that requiring 
reporting on placement and retention rates will promote greater 
transparency about this mismatch where it exists in order to help IHEs 
and policymakers better understand and address this problem.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \9\ Richard M. Ingersoll and David Perda, ``Is the Supply of 
Mathematics and Science Teachers Sufficient?'' American Education 
Research Journal (May 2010). http://aer.sagepub.com/content/47/3/563.
    \10\ New York Board of Regents, ``Teacher Demand and Supply 
Reports,'' (2013). http://www.regents.nysed.gov/meetings/2013Meetings/November2013/TeacherSupplyDemandReports.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In regard to teacher retention, we believe that this measure 
reflects, to a significant extent, the degree to which teachers are 
adequately prepared for the schools that employ them. In a survey of 
American Federation of Teachers members, 50 percent indicated that 
their teacher preparation program did not adequately prepare them for 
the challenges of teaching in the ``real world.'' \11\ This lack of 
preparation is a concern not only because of the potential impact on 
the learning outcomes of the students taught by such teachers, but 
because the Department believes that inadequately prepared teachers are 
less likely to remain in the classroom, and teacher attrition entails 
significant costs for States, districts, and schools. Although hard to 
quantify, research suggests that a conservative estimate of the cost of 
teacher turnover is 30 percent of the leaving teacher's salary.\12\ By 
requiring reporting on teacher retention rates by program, the 
Department believes that employers will be able to better understand 
which teacher preparation programs have strong track records for 
placing recent graduates as new teachers who stay, and succeed, in the 
classroom. This information will in turn help employers make informed 
hiring decisions and may ultimately help districts reduce teacher 
turnover rates and cut some of the high costs associated with such 
turnover.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \11\ American Federation of Teachers Teacher Preparation Task 
Force, ``Raising the Bar: Aligning and Elevating Teacher Preparation 
and the Teaching Profession,'' (2012). http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED538664.pdf.
    \12\ Barnes et al, ``The Cost of Teacher Turnover in Five School 
Districts: A Pilot Study,'' National Commission on Teaching and 
America's Future (2007). http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED497176.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The requirement to report disaggregated employment outcome measures 
for high-need schools reflects the need to ensure transparency about 
which programs are encouraging placement at high-need schools and which 
programs' recent graduates are succeeding in these placements as 
reflected by retention rates. High-need schools face unique challenges 
and experience much higher vacancy and attrition rates, compared to 
other schools. More than 90 percent of high minority concentration 
districts reported challenges recruiting qualified applicants to teach 
math and science compared with roughly 40 percent of low minority 
districts.\13\ High-poverty schools have some of the highest rates of 
attrition among public schools, and high-poverty schools experience 
roughly 50 percent higher turnover rates than low-poverty schools.\14\ 
In addition to experiencing larger proportions of teachers leaving the 
profession, four times as many math and science teachers transfer from 
high-poverty schools to low-poverty schools than transfer from low-
poverty schools to

[[Page 71839]]

high-poverty schools. Similarly, three-and-a-half times as many math 
and science teachers transfer from urban to suburban schools as 
transfer from suburban to urban schools.\15\ A limited body of research 
also suggests that differences in turnover rates result in a higher 
relative cost to high-need schools than their more advantaged 
counterparts.\16\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \13\ US Department of Education, ``State and Local 
Implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act: Volume VIII--Teacher 
Quality Under NCLB,'' (2009). http://www2.ed.gov/rschstat/eval/teaching/nclb-final/report.pdf.
    \14\ Richard Ingersoll, ``Teacher Turnover and Teacher 
Shortages: An Organizational Analysis,'' American Educational 
Research Journal (2001). http://www.gse.upenn.edu/pdf/rmi/TeacherTurnoverTeacherShortages-RMI-Fall-2001.pdf.
    \15\ Richard Ingersoll and Henry May, ``The Magnitude, 
Destinations, and Determinants of Mathematics and Science Teacher 
Turnover,'' Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis (2012). 
http://epa.sagepub.com/content/34/4/435.
    \16\ Barnes et al, ``The Cost of Teacher Turnover in Five School 
Districts: A Pilot Study,'' National Commission on Teaching and 
America's Future (2007). http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED497176.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Recognizing these unique challenges faced by high-need schools, we 
believe that it is essential to promote transparency in the reporting 
of employment outcomes through disaggregated information about high-
needs schools and requiring that it be factored in significant part in 
a program's performance rating. In turn, this transparency will inform 
program improvement and encourage teacher preparation programs to 
increase their employment retention rates in high-need schools, such as 
by strengthening their partnerships with high-need schools and 
districts.
    In our discussions about employment outcomes during negotiated 
rulemaking, we spent a considerable amount of time examining questions 
and issues concerning the calculation of teacher placement and 
retention rates for different types of programs.
    For example, both the Department and non-Federal negotiators agreed 
that, in order to minimize the burden associated with calculating 
teacher placement and teacher retention rates and to better focus the 
data collection, States should be allowed to include or exclude, at 
their discretion, certain categories of new teachers from the teacher 
placement and teacher retention rate calculations for their teacher 
preparation programs, provided that each State uses a consistent 
approach to assess and report on all of the teacher preparation 
programs in the State. These categories include teachers who leave the 
State, teach in private schools or other settings that do not require 
State certification or licensure, are not retained due to market 
conditions or other circumstances particular to the LEA and beyond the 
control of the teachers or schools, or join the military or enroll in 
graduate school.
    We anticipate that States will have varying circumstances and 
capacities that would make it difficult for some States to provide data 
regarding these categories of teachers, while other States would like 
to analyze this data. For example, some States may have systems in 
place to track teachers in private schools and others may not, and some 
States have strong relationships with nearby States where a substantial 
proportion of out-of-state graduates work and others may not. For this 
reason, the definitions of ``teacher placement rate'' and ``teacher 
retention rate'' allow a State to exclude one or more of these 
categories from its calculations, provided that the State uses a 
consistent approach to assess and report on all of the teacher 
preparation programs in the State. The Department, however, encourages 
States to develop appropriate data linkages across States, when 
possible, to capture teachers that are employed outside of the State in 
which their teacher preparation programs are located.
    Some non-Federal negotiators argued that, because teacher placement 
rates and teacher retention rates could vary based solely on the kind, 
rather than quality, of a teacher preparation program, States should be 
permitted to assess teacher placement and teacher retention rates for 
traditional programs differently than the way they assess them for 
alternative route programs. The Department agreed that this flexibility 
would be appropriate if there are differences in the programs that 
affect employment outcomes (such as employment requirements for entry 
into an alternative route program). Therefore, in proposed Sec.  
612.5(a)(2), States are permitted, at their discretion, to assess 
traditional and alternative route teacher preparation programs 
differently based on whether there are differences in the programs that 
affect employment outcomes, provided that varied assessments result in 
equivalent levels of accountability and reporting.
    To achieve equivalent standards of accountability in assessments of 
employment outcomes for traditional programs and alternative route 
programs, States could employ a variety of approaches. For example, a 
State might choose to use a single uniform standard for all teacher 
preparation programs in the State, but apply that standard differently 
to traditional programs (relative to other traditional programs) 
compared to alternative route programs (relative to other alternative 
route programs). Thus, when assessing teacher retention rates, for 
example, a State might choose to apply a uniform standard to all 
teacher preparation programs in the State (i.e., to achieve an 
``exceptional'' designation of program quality, a program would need to 
produce a retention rate in the top quartile of like programs), or it 
might apply that standard differently for traditional versus 
alternative route programs (i.e., to attain top quartile status a 
traditional program would need to meet an 80 percent retention rate 
threshold relative to other traditional programs, while to reach top 
quartile status an alternative route program would need to meet a 60 
percent retention rate threshold relative to other alternative route 
programs).
    Alternatively, in assessing employment outcomes a State might 
choose to weight indicators differently for traditional programs versus 
alternative route programs in order to achieve equivalent standards of 
accountability. Thus, in States where employment is a prerequisite to 
entry into alternative route programs, a State might recognize that, by 
definition, all alternative route programs would have nearly 100 
percent placement rates, thereby reducing the value of placement rate 
as a valid and reliable indicator of such programs' performance. 
Accordingly, because all alternative route programs in that context 
would, by definition, have similarly high placement rates, when 
assessing and reporting on employment outcomes under Sec.  612.5, a 
State could assess alternative route programs relative to other 
alternative route programs in order to effectively or explicitly reduce 
the weight given to placement rate as an indicator of program quality. 
In doing so, by necessity, the relative weight of other indicators of 
program performance, which might prove more valid and reliable in that 
context, would increase.
    Non-Federal negotiators were initially divided on whether teacher 
retention was an accurate measure of teacher preparation program 
quality. However, given these allowances for calculating teacher 
retention, the various ways a State might calculate this measure, and 
State discretion in relative weighting of this indicator as compared to 
other indicators, a majority of the non-Federal negotiators eventually 
expressed support for using the measure as one of a comprehensive set 
of indicators of the academic content knowledge and teaching skills of 
a program's new teachers and recent graduates as part of a State's 
criteria for assessing teacher preparation program performance.
Rationale for Survey Outcomes
    We propose to use survey outcome data as an indicator of academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers from teacher 
preparation

[[Page 71840]]

programs that we would require States to assess under proposed Sec.  
612.5(a) in determining program performance. Specifically, through this 
indicator, States would examine whether employers and the new teachers 
themselves are satisfied that a teacher preparation program has 
provided new teachers with the skills needed to succeed in the 
classroom. Survey outcome data would provide another, more qualitative 
measure for examining the effectiveness of a teacher preparation 
program in producing new teachers with requisite academic content and 
teaching skills.
    Two of the major national organizations focused on teacher 
preparation are now incorporating this kind of survey data as an 
indicator of program quality. The National Council on Teacher Quality 
(NCTQ) relies on the use of surveys in its rankings of teacher 
preparation programs. In its recently adopted accreditation standards, 
CAEP--which serves as the accreditor of the largest number of teacher 
preparation programs--requires in its standards that teacher 
preparation programs measure employer and completer satisfaction and 
recommend valid and reliable surveys as a method of collecting these 
data. Just as research shows that K-12 student surveys are a valid 
means for assessing aspects of teacher effectiveness,\17\ the use of 
satisfaction surveys by employers and program completers, as required 
by the CAEP standards, is aimed at assessing ``the results of 
preparation at the point where they most matter--in classrooms and 
schools.'' CAEP has also recommended the development of common survey 
items and instruments for employers and completers and suggests that it 
could participate in the validation of survey instruments. 
Specifically, CAEP believes that ``much efficiency might be gained 
through CAEP collaboration with states on preparation measures of 
common interest, such as employment and retention rates, and perhaps 
completer and employer surveys.'' The use of surveys is thus a practice 
that is becoming increasingly prevalent and one that the Department 
expects to contribute to future research on teacher preparation program 
quality.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, 
``CAEP Accreditation Standards,'' (2013). http://caepnet.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/final_board_approved1.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition, it is important to note that graduating student and 
employer surveys are also employed in the higher education world more 
broadly, including by accrediting agencies. For example, the Committee 
on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical 
Services Professions requires its accredited programs to conduct 
surveys of each group of graduating students and the employers of those 
graduates within 6-12 months after graduation using required graduate 
survey and employer survey items.\18\ Also, the Committee on 
Accreditation for Education in Neurodiagnostic Technology requires all 
accredited programs to survey both graduates and employers of graduates 
six months following graduation using, at a minimum, all items 
contained in its graduate and employer surveys.\19\ Finally, many IHEs 
conduct graduate and alumni surveys, as well as employer surveys, to 
help improve their programs.\20\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ ``Evaluation Instruments/Program Resources,'' Committee on 
Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical 
Services Professions. http://coaemsp.org/Evaluations.htm.
    \19\ ``Standardized Graduate and Employer Surveys,'' Committee 
on Accreditation for Education in Neurodiagnostic Technology. http://coa-end.org/?page_id=27.
    \20\ See, for example, ``Graduate/Employer Survey Data,'' 
California State University-Fullerton, College of Education. http://ed.fullerton.edu/about-us/accreditation-and-assessment/assessments/graduateemployer-survey-data/.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We believe that this indicator is a useful measure of teacher 
preparation program quality because many teachers report entering the 
profession feeling unprepared for classroom realities. Collecting 
survey data from new teachers and their employers would provide 
important qualitative information about a teacher's ability to transfer 
the knowledge and skills acquired in their preparation program to their 
classrooms. We believe it is important to collect this information from 
both teachers and their employers because each group represents a 
different perspective on the quality of the teacher's preparation. We 
propose that the survey outcome data would be collected through, at a 
minimum, surveys of new teachers and surveys of employers and 
supervisors of new teachers, in each case for those new teachers in 
their first year of teaching who attended a teacher preparation program 
in the State where the new teachers are employed or supervised.
    Non-Federal negotiators discussed at great length the potential 
burden to States in requiring the use of survey outcomes as an 
indicator of academic content knowledge and teaching skills of new 
teachers. Some non-Federal negotiators expressed concern about the 
potential costs and burdens associated with the requirement.
    During the negotiations, non-Federal negotiators broadly rejected a 
proposal by the Department that the Department take responsibility for, 
including responsibility for costs of, conducting the surveys of new 
teachers and their employers and supervisors. These non-Federal 
negotiators believed that States are better positioned to know what 
data should be collected and why. Given the reaction of the non-Federal 
negotiators, the Department is not proposing to take on this 
responsibility.

Rationale for Accreditation or State Approval To Provide Teacher 
Candidates With Content and Pedagogical Knowledge and Quality Clinical 
Preparation and as Having Rigorous Teacher Candidate Entry and Exit 
Qualifications

    The required indicators of teachers' academic content knowledge and 
teaching skills in proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(1) through (a)(3) are 
outcome-based measures that we believe will provide strong and clear 
evidence of the quality of each teacher preparation program. During 
negotiations, many non-Federal negotiators expressed the view that 
States should also assess the quality of teacher preparation programs 
based on indicators of program inputs that provide signals of the 
program's quality before outcome data are available. In addition, 
outcome indicators measure results but do not suggest a cause for 
favorable or unfavorable results, nor do they inform programs about 
steps they should take in order to improve. For these reasons, we added 
input measures recommended by non-Federal negotiators as an additional 
indicator of content knowledge and teaching skills that States would 
use to determine a program's quality.
    Specifically, we propose in Sec.  612.5(a)(4) that, for purposes of 
its reporting indicators of, and data on, the performance of each 
teacher preparation program under proposed Sec.  612.4, a State must 
include as an indicator whether the teacher preparation program either 
is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency that the Secretary 
recognizes for accrediting professional teacher education programs or, 
consistent with Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(B), the program produces teacher 
candidates with content and pedagogical knowledge and quality clinical 
preparation, who have met rigorous entry and exit qualifications. Non-
Federal negotiators also told us that accrediting agencies base 
accreditation on these same factors regarding knowledge, clinical 
preparation, and entry and exit requirements, and thus, an 
accreditation is tantamount to a

[[Page 71841]]

State's assurance that the teacher preparation program has these 
attributes. Accordingly, programs that receive such accreditation would 
already be determined to have satisfied the indicator.
    The non-Federal negotiators proposed these two options not only to 
give States discretion in how they determined that a program had these 
input qualities, but also to provide them with a way to determine that 
alternative route programs, which often are not eligible for 
specialized accreditation, have these input qualities and so may be 
designated as exceptional teacher preparation programs using the same 
indicators as other programs.
    The Department agrees with the suggestions of the non-Federal 
negotiators and believes that use of multiple input-based measures in 
the assessment of teacher preparation program quality would complement 
the outcome-based measures in proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(1)-(3).

Rationale for Other Indicators Predictive of a Teacher's Effect on 
Student Performance

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(b), a State also could use other 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills predictive 
of a teacher's effect on student performance to assess a teacher 
preparation program's performance. However, in order to be able to 
compare programs as reflected in proposed Sec.  612.5(b), if a State 
utilizes such other indicators, we believe the State should apply the 
same indicators for all of its teacher preparation programs. This would 
ensure consistent evaluation of a State's teacher preparation programs.
    The Department believes that the indicators of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills that States are required to collect and 
report under these proposed regulations would significantly improve the 
reliability, validity, integrity, and accuracy of teacher preparation 
program performance evaluation. However, the Department acknowledges 
that future research may show that other indicators beyond those that 
are required could provide additional information on teacher 
preparation program performance. For example, recent research has found 
that results from surveying students can provide additional reliability 
in measuring teacher performance, especially when included in a 
combined measure, and that these data may provide more robust feedback 
for teachers of non-tested grades and subjects.\21\ This proposed 
regulatory provision would permit a State, at its discretion, to use 
this or other such indicators.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \21\ Thomas Kane and Douglas Staiger, ``Gathering Feedback for 
Teaching: Combining High-Quality Observations with Student Surveys 
and Achievement Gains,'' Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Measures 
of Effective Teaching (MET) Project (January, 2012). http://www.metproject.org/downloads/MET Gathering Feedback Practioner 
Brief.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sec.  612.6 What must a State consider in identifying low-performing 
teacher preparation programs or at-risk teacher preparation programs, 
and what regulatory actions must a State take with respect to those 
programs identified as low-performing?

    Statute: Section 205(b)(1)(F) of the HEA requires that the State 
include in its annual report card a description of the State's criteria 
for assessing the performance of teacher preparation programs within 
IHEs in the State, including the indicators of the academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills of students enrolled in the teacher 
preparation programs. Furthermore, section 205(b) of the HEA provides 
that States must report not less than the information specified in 
section 205(b)(1)(A) through (b)(1)(L) of the HEA, and requires States 
to provide this information in a uniform and comprehensible manner that 
conforms with the definitions and methods established by the Secretary.
    In addition, section 207(a) of the HEA requires States to identify 
low-performing teacher preparation programs in the State, and provide 
to the Secretary in the report card an annual list of low-performing 
teacher preparation programs as well as those programs at risk of being 
placed on the low-performing teacher preparation program list. Section 
207(a) of the HEA further requires a State to provide technical 
assistance to low-performing teacher preparation programs.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: Under proposed Sec.  612.6(a), we would 
require States to use criteria that, at a minimum, include the 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills from 
proposed Sec.  612.5, including, in significant part, employment 
outcomes for high-need schools and student learning outcomes when 
determining whether a teacher preparation program should be identified 
as a low-performing teacher preparation program or an at-risk teacher 
preparation program. (Consistent with our approach in proposed 
Sec. Sec.  612.4 and 612.5, the required use of these indicators would 
not apply to the identification of low-performing or at-risk teacher 
preparation programs by American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the 
Northern Mariana Islands, the freely associated states of the Republic 
of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the 
Republic of Palau, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands).
    Under proposed Sec.  612.6(b), States would also be required to 
provide technical assistance to improve the performance of any teacher 
preparation program in its State that has been identified as a low-
performing teacher preparation program. Technical assistance may 
include, but would not be limited to: Providing programs with 
information on the specific indicators used to determine the program's 
rating (e.g., specific areas of weakness in student learning, job 
placement and retention, and new teacher or employer satisfaction); 
assisting programs to address the rigor of their entry and exit 
criteria; helping programs identify specific areas of curriculum or 
clinical experiences that correlate with gaps in graduates' 
preparation; helping identify potential research and other resources to 
assist program improvement (e.g., evidence of other successful 
interventions, other university faculty, other teacher preparation 
programs, nonprofits with expertise in educator preparation and teacher 
effectiveness improvement, accrediting organizations, or higher 
education associations); and sharing best practices from exemplary 
programs.
    Reasons: This section implements the statutory requirement that 
States conduct an assessment to identify low-performing teacher 
preparation programs in the State and help those programs to improve 
their performance by providing technical assistance to them. So that 
proposed Sec.  612.6 reflects all applicable requirements, we also 
would reiterate the relevant requirement under proposed Sec.  
612.4(b)(1) that the State's criteria include, at a minimum, the 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills from Sec.  
612.5, including, in significant part, employment outcomes for high-
need schools and student learning outcomes. The Department includes a 
requirement to factor in the placement and retention of new teachers in 
high-need schools, in significant part, in determining teacher 
preparation performance because the Secretary believes that a program's 
ability to train future teachers who succeed in high-need schools is a 
critical standard for assessing a teacher preparation program's 
effectiveness. The Secretary believes that a State's reliance

[[Page 71842]]

in significant part on employment outcomes in high-need schools will 
encourage teacher preparation programs to improve and strengthen their 
efforts to prepare new teachers for high-need schools, and thus, will 
help to address unmet demand and improve learning outcomes in such 
schools, which is the primary policy objective of the TEACH Grant 
program. With respect to student learning outcomes, consistent with the 
approach the Department has taken in promoting educator evaluation 
systems in programs and initiatives such as ESEA Flexibility, Race to 
the Top, and the Teacher Incentive Fund, the Secretary believes that 
the performance of teacher preparation programs should also weight 
student outcomes, in significant part, because, as with educator 
evaluation systems, student outcomes are an important, but not 
exclusive, factor for measuring performance.
    The statute also requires that States identify programs that are 
at-risk of being identified as low-performing, and proposed Sec.  612.6 
would state this requirement as well.

Subpart C--Consequences of Withdrawal of State Approval or Financial 
Support

Sec.  612.7 What are the consequences for a low-performing teacher 
preparation program that loses the State's approval or the State's 
financial support?
    Statute: Section 207(b) of the HEA describes the consequences that 
occur when a teacher preparation program, that the State finds to be 
low-performing based on its assessment of program performance, loses 
State approval or financial support. Low-performing teacher preparation 
programs that have lost State approval or financial support are 
ineligible for funding awarded by the Department for professional 
development activities. In addition, these teacher preparation programs 
may not accept or enroll any student who receives HEA title IV student 
financial assistance. Further, the affected teacher preparation program 
must provide transitional support, including remedial services if 
necessary, for students enrolled when the loss of State approval or 
financial support occurs.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: Proposed Sec.  612.7(a)(1) and (a)(2) would 
codify in regulations the statutory requirements that a teacher 
preparation program from which the State has withdrawn its approval or 
terminated its financial support because of the State's identification 
of the program as a low-performing teacher preparation program--
    (a) Is ineligible for professional development funding awarded by 
the Department, and
    (b) is not permitted to include any candidate accepted into the 
teacher preparation program (as defined in proposed Sec.  612.2(d)) or 
any candidate enrolled in the teacher preparation program (as defined 
in proposed Sec.  612.2(d)) who receives HEA title IV, student 
financial assistance in the IHE's teacher preparation program as of the 
date that the State's approval was withdrawn or the State's financial 
support was terminated. In proposed Sec.  612.2(d), we would define the 
term ``candidate accepted into a teacher preparation program'' as an 
individual who has been admitted into a teacher preparation program but 
who has not yet enrolled in any coursework that the IHE has determined 
to be part of that teacher preparation program. In that section, we 
would also define the term ``candidate enrolled in a teacher 
preparation program'' as an individual who has been accepted into a 
teacher preparation program and is in the process of completing 
required coursework but has not completed the teacher preparation 
program.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.7(a)(3), any teacher preparation program 
from which the State has withdrawn its approval or terminated its 
financial support because of the State's identification of the program 
as a low-performing teacher preparation program would also be required 
to provide transitional support (including remedial services, if 
necessary) to students enrolled in the teacher preparation program at 
the IHE at the time of the withdrawal of approval or termination of 
financial support for a period of time no longer than 150 percent of 
the published length of the program, but not less than the period of 
time a student continues in the program (up to 150 percent of the 
published program length).
    Proposed Sec.  612.7(b) would describe the requirements that apply 
to any IHE administering a teacher preparation program that has lost 
State approval or financial support based on being identified by the 
State as a low-performing teacher preparation program. First, under 
proposed Sec.  612.7(b)(1), such an IHE would be required to notify the 
Secretary of the loss of State approval or financial support within 30 
days of such designation. Second, under proposed Sec.  612.7(b)(2), the 
IHE would be required to immediately notify each affected student that 
the IHE is no longer eligible to provide funding to them under title 
IV, HEA commencing with the next payment period. Finally, under 
proposed Sec.  612.7(b)(3), the IHE would be required to disclose on 
its Web site and in promotional materials that it makes available to 
prospective students the fact that the teacher preparation program has 
been identified by the State as a low-performing teacher preparation 
program, has lost State approval or financial support, and that 
students accepted or enrolled in that program may not receive title IV, 
HEA funding.
    Reasons: Proposed Sec.  612.7(a) implements the statutory 
requirement that low-performing teacher preparation programs that have 
lost State approval or financial support are ineligible for funding for 
professional development activities awarded by the Department, may not 
accept or enroll any student who receives title IV student financial 
assistance, and must provide transitional support for students enrolled 
when the loss of State approval or financial support occurred.
    In proposed Sec.  612.7(a)(3), we would require a teacher 
preparation program that has lost State approval or financial support 
under this part to provide affected students (such as students 
currently enrolled in the teacher preparation program) with 
transitional support for a period of time no longer than 150 percent of 
the published program length, but not less than the period of time a 
student continues in the program (up to 150 percent of the published 
program length). We expect such transitional support to include such 
services as remedial services, career counseling, or assistance with 
locating another teacher preparation program for the student.
    Regulations governing satisfactory academic progress under Sec.  
668.34(b), which apply to all title IV federal student aid, establish a 
maximum timeframe of no longer than 150 percent of the published length 
of the educational program relative to the pace at which a student must 
progress through his or her educational program to ensure that the 
student will complete the program within the maximum timeframe. To be 
consistent with the maximum timeframe used for other title IV Federal 
student aid programs, the Secretary believes that the transitional 
support under this section should also be provided for a period of time 
no longer than 150 percent of the published program length. Hence, we 
propose this same timeframe for transitional support in Sec.  
612.7(a)(3).
    In addition, given the consequences students face when a teacher 
preparation program loses State approval or financial support, it is

[[Page 71843]]

imperative that any IHE administering such a program make this 
information widely available and do so promptly. For this reason, and 
to be consistent with other notifications related to HEA title IV 
programs, we would require such an IHE to notify the Secretary within 
30 days.\22\ This notification is necessary and reasonable because the 
students in the affected program would no longer be eligible for title 
IV, HEA funding, and the Department would need to take action to ensure 
that no further title IV, HEA funds are disbursed to students accepted 
or enrolled in the affected teacher preparation program. In addition, 
because a student enrolled or accepted for enrollment in such a program 
would be unable to receive title IV, HEA funding if he or she remains 
with the program, we would require under proposed Sec.  612.7(b)(2) 
that IHEs administering such a program immediately notify each student 
who is enrolled or accepted into the low-performing teacher preparation 
program and who receives title IV, HEA financial assistance that, 
commencing the next payment period, the IHE is no longer eligible to 
provide such funding to students enrolled or accepted into the low-
performing teacher preparation program. Finally, we would require any 
IHE administering a teacher preparation program that has been 
identified as low-performing and has lost State approval or financial 
support to disclose that information on its Web site and in any 
promotional materials it makes available to prospective students so 
that prospective students and employers have current information about 
program quality in order to make informed choices.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \22\ See, for example, 34 CFR 600.40(d)(1), which requires that 
any IHE that has lost institutional eligibility to enroll students 
receiving title IV aid notify the Secretary within 30 days.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sec.  612.8 How does a low-performing teacher preparation program 
regain the eligibility to accept or enroll students receiving Title IV, 
HEA funds after loss of the State's approval or the State's financial 
support?
    Statute: Section 207(b)(4) of the HEA provides that a low-
performing teacher preparation program, from which the State has 
withdrawn State approval or terminated the State's financial support 
but which has sufficiently improved its performance, shall have its 
eligibility for title IV, HEA funds reinstated upon the State's 
determination of improved performance.
    Current Regulations: None.
    Proposed Regulations: Under proposed Sec.  612.8(a), a low-
performing teacher preparation program that has lost State approval or 
financial support may have its title IV eligibility and its eligibility 
for Department funding for professional development activities 
reinstated if it can demonstrate (1) improved teacher preparation 
program performance, as determined by the State based on the teacher 
preparation program performance indicators under proposed Sec.  612.5 
and (2) reinstatement by the State of its approval or financial 
support. In proposed Sec.  612.8(b), we would clarify that, to meet the 
requirements of proposed Sec.  612.8(a), the IHE must submit an 
application to the Secretary with supporting documentation that would 
allow the Secretary to determine that the teacher preparation program 
that had previously lost State approval or financial support based on 
poor performance has improved performance as measured using the 
indicators in proposed Sec.  612.5, and that the State has reinstated 
its approval or financial support.
    Reasons: This section would implement the statutory provision that 
low-performing teacher preparation programs that have lost State 
approval or financial support can regain eligibility to accept or 
enroll students receiving title IV, HEA funding by demonstrating 
improved performance, as determined by the State. Consistent with the 
State's reporting of the performance level of each teacher preparation 
program, as required under proposed Sec.  612.4, we would link improved 
performance under this requirement with the State's determination of 
the performance level of the teacher preparation program, using the 
indicators under proposed Sec.  612.5 and the State's decision to 
reinstate approval or financial support of the program. Because 
reinstatement of the authority to award financial assistance under 
title IV of the HEA would require the Secretary's approval, proposed 
Sec.  612.8(b) would provide the process by which an IHE would submit 
an application for reinstatement to the Secretary that will enable the 
Secretary to determine that the teacher preparation program previously 
identified by the State as low-performing has met the requirements 
under proposed Sec.  612.8(a). The Secretary will evaluate an IHE's 
application to participate in the title IV, HEA programs consistent 
with 34 CFR 600.20. In the event that an IHE is not granted eligibility 
to participate in the title IV, HEA programs, that IHE may submit 
additional evidence to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Secretary 
that it is eligible to participate in the title IV, HEA programs.

Part 686--Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education 
(TEACH) Grant Program

Subpart A--Scope, Purpose and General Definitions


Sec.  686.2  Definitions

High-Quality Teacher Preparation Program and TEACH Grant-Eligible STEM 
Program
    Statute: Section 420L(1)(A) of the HEA provides that in order to be 
eligible to participate in the TEACH Grant program, an IHE must, among 
meeting other requirements, provide ``high-quality teacher preparation 
and professional development services, including extensive clinical 
experience as part of pre-service preparation'' as determined by the 
Secretary.
    Current Regulations: Section 686.2 provides definitions for key 
terms used for 34 CFR part 686. It does not currently include a 
definition of ``high-quality teacher preparation'' or ``TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program.''
    Proposed Regulations: The Department proposes to include in 
proposed Sec.  686.2(e) (current Sec.  686.2(d)) a definition for the 
term ``high-quality teacher preparation program'' to mean a teacher 
preparation program that (1) for purposes of the 2020-2021 title IV HEA 
award year, a State has classified as effective or of higher quality 
under proposed Sec.  612.4 in either or both the April 2019 and/or the 
April 2020 State Report Card and for purposes of the 2021-2022 title IV 
HEA award year and subsequent award years, a State has classified as 
effective or of higher quality under proposed Sec.  612.4, beginning 
with the April 2019 State Report Card, for two out of the previous 
three years, (2) meets the exception from State reporting of teacher 
preparation performance under 34 CFR 612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D) or 
(b)(4)(ii)(E), or (3) is a TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, 
engineering, or mathematics (STEM) program at a TEACH Grant-eligible 
institution. We propose to define a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program 
as a program in one of the physical, life, or computer sciences; 
technology; engineering; or mathematics as identified by the Secretary 
that has not been identified by the Secretary as having fewer than 60 
percent of its TEACH Grant recipients completing at least one year of 
teaching that fulfills the service obligation pursuant to Sec.  686.40 
within three years of completing the program for the most recent three 
years for which data are

[[Page 71844]]

available. The definition of ``teacher preparation program'' is 
discussed elsewhere in this notice.
    In proposed Sec.  686.2(d), we would also add a cross-reference to 
the definition of the term ``effective teacher preparation program'' in 
proposed 34 CFR part 612.
    Reasons: The term ``high-quality teacher preparation program'' is 
not explicitly defined in either the statute or the TEACH Grant program 
regulations. Currently, TEACH Grants are awarded at more than 800 of 
the approximately 2,124 IHEs that house a teacher preparation program 
without, for many of these programs, a specific determination of 
teacher preparation program quality being made. In addition, some IHEs 
with teacher preparation programs that have been designated by States 
as low-performing or at-risk of being low-performing are currently 
awarding TEACH Grants.
    Under the proposed definition of ``high-quality teacher preparation 
program,'' the Secretary would determine that a program is a high-
quality teacher preparation program only if it has been classified by 
the State to be an effective teacher preparation program or of higher 
quality under Sec.  612.4 in either or both the April 2019 and/or the 
April 2020 State Report Card for the 2020-2021 title IV HEA award year 
and in two out of the previous three years beginning with the April 
2019 State Report Card for the 2021-2022 title IV HEA award year; meets 
the exception from State reporting of teacher preparation program 
performance under 34 CFR 612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D) or (b)(4)(ii)(E); or is a 
TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering, or mathematics 
(STEM) program at a TEACH Grant-eligible institution. ``Effective or of 
higher quality'' under this definition refers to teacher preparation 
program performance levels of effective or higher as defined in 
proposed part 612. New Sec.  686.2(d) includes a cross-reference to the 
definition of the term ``effective teacher preparation program'' in 
part 612 to clarify what we mean by this term in the context of part 
686. The proposed language refers to a program being classified as 
``effective or of higher quality'' rather than as an ``effective 
teacher preparation program'' or ``exceptional teacher preparation 
program'' because States have discretion to classify teacher 
preparation programs in performance levels other than the four required 
in part 612. For example, a State could create a performance level 
above effective, but below exceptional. For the purpose of TEACH Grant 
eligibility, we intend to require only that a program has been 
identified as at least an ``effective teacher preparation program.''
    The Department believes that the proposed definition of high-
quality teacher preparation program, which would connect the assessment 
of teacher preparation program quality under the title II reporting 
system in proposed part 612 with TEACH Grant program funding, would 
help ensure that TEACH Grants are awarded only to students in high-
quality teacher preparation programs. Research from States that have 
linked student achievement data to teacher preparation programs such as 
Louisiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Washington State show there 
are significant and lasting differences in quality between teacher 
preparation programs, and that high-quality programs can consistently 
produce teachers who obtain larger student achievement gains than 
teachers from other preparation programs.\23\ For example, in 2003-
2004, the Louisiana Board of Regents began examining the growth in 
achievement of K-12 students and linking the growth in student learning 
to teacher preparation programs. They began by using achievement data 
for students from ten school districts, and, over time, have added all 
school districts in the State and all public and private universities 
with teacher preparation programs. They have found that some teacher 
preparation programs prepare new teachers who are equivalent to 
experienced teachers, while other programs prepare new teachers whose 
effectiveness is at or below other new teachers.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ See, for example, Tennessee Higher Education Commission, 
``Report Card on the Effectiveness of Teacher Training Programs,'' 
Nashville, TN (2010); Dan Goldhaber, et al. ``The Gateway to the 
Profession: Assessing Teacher Preparation Programs Based on Student 
Achievement.'' Economics of Education Review, 34 (2013), pp. 29-44.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Tennessee passed legislation in 2007 requiring the State Board of 
Education to analyze the effectiveness of teacher preparation programs. 
Annually, the Tennessee Higher Education Commission produces ``report 
cards'' on each teacher preparation program in the State with 
information such as teacher preparation program placement and retention 
rates and the student growth of K-12 students taught by teacher 
preparation program graduates.
    The proposed definition of ``high-quality teacher preparation 
program'' includes teacher preparation programs that meet the exception 
from State reporting of teacher preparation program performance under 
34 CFR 612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D), which exempts programs unable to meet the 
threshold size, or 34 CFR 612.4(b)(4)(E), which exempts programs if 
reporting of their performance data would be inconsistent with Federal 
or State confidentiality laws or regulations. We believe that programs 
that meet one or both of these exceptions should not be excluded from 
TEACH Grant eligibility because of their small size or the fact that 
they are subject to privacy laws or regulations that would temporarily 
delay them from reporting on their performance until they reach an 
acceptable program size threshold by enrolling more students or 
aggregating across programs or years under proposed 612.4(b)(4)(ii).
    Under this proposed definition for high-quality teacher preparation 
program, the levels of program performance as reported in State report 
cards in both the April 2019 and the April 2020 State Report Card for 
the 2020-2021 title IV HEA award year would determine TEACH Grant 
eligibility for the 2020-2021 academic year. Subsequently, beginning 
with the 2021-2022 title IV HEA award year, a program's eligibility 
would be based on the level of program performance reported in the 
State Report Card for two out of three years. For example, program 
eligibility for the 2021-2022 title IV HEA award year, would be based 
on the level of performance reported in the April 2019, 2020, and 2021 
State Report Cards. The State Report Card ratings from April 2018 (if 
the State exercised its option to report the ratings using the new 
indicators) and April 2019 would not immediately impact TEACH Grant 
eligibility. Instead, the loss of TEACH Grant eligibility for low-
performing or at-risk programs would become effective July 1, 2020. In 
addition, the proposed definition of ``high-quality teacher preparation 
program'' would include a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program at a TEACH 
Grant-eligible institution. A TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program would 
be defined, in part, as an eligible program, as defined in 34 CFR 
668.8, in one of the physical, life, or computer sciences; technology; 
engineering; or mathematics as identified by the Secretary. This 
definition is consistent with the definition that was used in the 
National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant 
(National SMART Grant) Program's definition of SMART Grant-eligible 
program.
    To meet the proposed definition of a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM 
program, a program also must, over the most recent three years for 
which data are available, not have been identified by the Secretary as 
having fewer than sixty percent of its TEACH Grant recipients complete 
at least one year of teaching

[[Page 71845]]

that fulfills the service obligation pursuant to Sec.  686.40 within 
three years of completing the STEM program. In addition, the definition 
of TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program would specify that the Secretary 
will publish an annual list of TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs 
identified by Classification of Instructional Program (CIP) codes as 
defined in the proposed regulations. Publishing this list will enable 
the public to determine easily whether a specific STEM program is 
eligible to participate in the TEACH Grant program.
    If otherwise eligible, a student who intends to be a teacher may 
receive a TEACH Grant if the student majors in one of the STEM areas 
identified by the Secretary using the CIP codes promulgated by the 
National Center for Education Statistics (which generally include 
programs in the physical, life, or computer sciences; technology; 
engineering; or mathematics). Majoring in a STEM field allows a 
prospective teacher to develop content knowledge in that field. 
Research has found that a teacher's content specialization in 
mathematics or science has a positive impact on student achievement in 
those subjects.\24\ One way to encourage STEM majors to become teachers 
is to make TEACH Grants available to them. Note that while research 
shows that math and science teachers benefit from obtaining a content-
area degree rather than a degree in education, research on other 
content areas such as history and English language arts does not show a 
similar relationship between content area degrees and teaching 
success.\25\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ Robert Floden and Marco Meniketti, ``Research on the 
Effects of Coursework in the Arts and Sciences and in the 
Foundations of Education,'' Studying Teacher Education: The Report 
of the AERA Panel on Research and Teacher Education, Mahwah, NJ 
(2006): 261-308.
    \25\ Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To ensure that all eligible programs provide high-quality teacher 
preparation, we believe it is appropriate to require that, over the 
most recent three years for which data are available, the Secretary has 
not identified that fewer than sixty percent of a STEM program's TEACH 
Grant recipients have taught full-time as a highly-qualified teacher in 
a high-need field in a low-income school in accordance with Sec.  
686.40 for at least one year within three years of completing the STEM 
program. The Secretary believes that sixty percent is the appropriate 
percentage because we believe TEACH Grant recipients in the STEM fields 
should enter the teaching profession at the same rates that education 
majors secure a teaching placement within ten years of receiving their 
bachelor's degree.\26\ The Department acknowledges that the overall 
rate of teaching is not the same as teaching in a high-need field in a 
low-income school, as is required under TEACH, but we think the rate is 
nonetheless reasonable because TEACH is designed to support students 
who have committed to fulfilling their service obligations, and because 
TEACH recipients are high-achieving students who attended high-quality 
programs. We have chosen a three-year window in order to allow students 
time to complete their content training and to enter into and complete 
a teacher preparation program. For example, we expect that some of 
these students would need to enroll in and complete a Master's degree 
to earn a teaching license. A three-year window would allow these 
students time to complete a Master's degree and then begin fulfilling 
their TEACH Grant service obligations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \26\ Sharon Anderson, ``Teacher Career Choices: Timing of 
Teacher Careers Among 1992-93 Bachelor's Degree Recipients, 
Postsecondary Education Descriptive Analysis Report,'' National 
Center for Education Statistics, Institute of Education Sciences, 
U.S. Department of Education, Washington, DC (2008). http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2008/2008153.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Secretary requests comments about this framework and 
particularly on the three-year window and on whether the sixty percent 
placement rate is a reasonable and realistic placement rate, or whether 
another rate, such as seventy-five percent, would be more reasonable or 
could be supported with research, data, or other analysis. The 
Secretary also requests comments about whether the definition of the 
term ``high-quality teacher preparation program'' should include other 
content majors, such as foreign language programs, at a TEACH Grant-
eligible institution. In particular, we invite comment as to whether 
strong empirical evidence exists that demonstrates that having a 
teacher with a content specialization in those fields leads to positive 
effects on student achievement in those subjects.
TEACH Grant-Eligible Institution
    Statute: Section 420(L)(1) of the HEA provides that an eligible IHE 
for TEACH Grant program purposes is an IHE as defined in section 102 of 
the HEA that is financially responsible and that provides high-quality 
teacher preparation and professional development services, including 
extensive clinical experience as part of pre-service preparation; 
pedagogical coursework or assistance in the provision of such 
coursework, including the monitoring of student performance, and formal 
instruction related to the theory and practices of teaching; and 
supervision and support services to teachers, or assistance in the 
provision of such services, including mentoring focused on developing 
effective teaching skills and strategies.
    Section 420L(2) of the HEA defines ``post-baccalaureate'' as a 
program of instruction for individuals who have completed a 
baccalaureate degree, that does not lead to a graduate degree, and that 
consists of courses required by a State in order for a teacher 
candidate to receive a professional certification or licensing 
credential that is required for employment as a teacher in an 
elementary school or secondary school in that State, except that such 
term does not include any program of instruction offered by an eligible 
IHE that offers a baccalaureate degree in education.
    Current Regulations: Current Sec.  686.2(d) defines a ``TEACH 
Grant-eligible institution'' as an eligible institution as defined in 
34 CFR part 600 that meets financial responsibility standards 
established in 34 CFR part 668, subpart L, or that qualifies under 
alternative standards in 34 CFR 668.175, and that meets one of the 
following four options:
    Option 1: The IHE provides a high-quality teacher preparation 
program at the baccalaureate or master's degree level that is either 
(a) accredited by a specialized accrediting agency recognized by the 
Secretary for the accreditation of professional teacher education 
programs or (b) is approved by a State and includes a minimum of 10 
weeks of full-time pre-service clinical experience, or its equivalent, 
and provides either pedagogical coursework or assistance in the 
provision of such coursework.
    To meet Option 1, the IHE must also provide supervision and support 
services to teachers, or assist in the provision of services to 
teachers, such as identifying and making available information on 
effective teaching skills or strategies; identifying and making 
information on effective practices in the supervision and coaching of 
novice teachers available; and mentoring focused on developing 
effective teaching skills and strategies.
    Option 2: The IHE provides a two-year program acceptable for full 
credit in a baccalaureate teacher preparation program under Option 1 in 
this section or acceptable for full credit in a baccalaureate degree 
program in a high-need field under Option 3 (described in the following 
paragraph).
    Option 3: The IHE provides a baccalaureate degree that, in

[[Page 71846]]

combination with other training or experience, will prepare an 
individual to teach in a high-need field and has entered into an 
agreement with an IHE under Option 1 or Option 4 to provide courses 
necessary for students to begin a teaching career.
    Option 4: The IHE provides a post-baccalaureate program of study.
    Proposed Regulations: The Department proposes to amend the 
definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible institution'' in current Sec.  
686.2(d) to provide that, to be TEACH Grant-eligible, an IHE must 
provide at least one teacher preparation program at the baccalaureate 
or master's degree level that is a high-quality teacher preparation 
program, as that term would be defined in proposed Sec.  668.2(e). 
(Note that we would redesignate current Sec.  686.2(d) as proposed 
Sec.  686.2(e), and the definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
institution'' would now be in Sec.  686.2(e).
    We would remove from paragraph (1)(i) of the current definition of 
``TEACH Grant-eligible institution'' in current Sec.  686.2(d) the 
requirement that an IHE provide a program that (1) is accredited by a 
specialized accrediting agency or (2) is approved by a State and 
includes a minimum of 10 weeks of full-time pre-service clinical 
experience, and provides either pedagogical coursework or assistance in 
the provision of such coursework. The substance of this removed 
language would be captured in the proposed indicators of teacher 
preparation program performance determined under proposed Sec. Sec.  
612.5(a)(4)(i) and (a)(4)(ii), respectively, and reported under the 
title II reporting system under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(B). We 
believe that these requirements, while important, should be part of a 
broader examination of a program's quality and not considered separate 
from other measures. For a full discussion of these proposed 
provisions, please refer to the preamble discussion related to proposed 
Sec. Sec.  612.4 and 612.5 earlier in this notice.
    In paragraph (iii) of the proposed definition of ``TEACH Grant-
eligible institution,'' we would include any eligible IHE that offers a 
TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering or mathematics 
(STEM) program (as defined in proposed Sec.  686.2(e)). In addition to 
offering a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program, such an IHE would be 
required to have an agreement with an IHE that either provides at least 
one high-quality teacher preparation program at the baccalaureate or 
master's degree level that also provides supervision and support 
services to teachers or assists in the provision of services to 
teachers, or that provides a high-quality teacher preparation program 
that is a post-baccalaureate program of study to provide courses 
necessary for students in the TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program to 
begin a career in teaching.
    We propose removing from the definition of TEACH Grant-eligible 
institution in current Sec.  686.2(d) paragraphs (2)(ii) and (3) so 
that a financially responsible IHE that (1) offers only a two-year 
program acceptable for full credit in a baccalaureate degree program in 
a high-need field in a TEACH-Grant eligible institution or (2) offers 
only a baccalaureate degree that in combination with other training or 
experience will prepare an individual to teach in a high-need field 
would no longer be considered a TEACH Grant-eligible institution. 
However, a financially responsible IHE that offers a two-year program 
acceptable for full credit in a TEACH Grant-eligible program offered by 
an IHE described in paragraph (1) of the definition of TEACH Grant-
eligible institution, or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program, offered 
by an IHE described in paragraph (iii) of the definition of TEACH 
Grant-eligible institution, would be considered a TEACH Grant-eligible 
institution.
    Finally, we propose amending paragraph (4) (to be redesignated as 
paragraph (iv)) of the definition of ``Teach Grant-eligible 
institution'' to provide that, for a post-baccalaureate program of 
study to meet the definition, it must be a high-quality teacher 
preparation program.
    Reasons: The Department is proposing these changes in order to 
consistently implement--at the pre-baccalaureate, baccalaureate, and 
post-baccalaureate levels--the requirement that, to be a TEACH-Grant 
eligible institution, an IHE must provide high-quality teacher 
preparation. We explain in the previous section the reasons for our 
focus on high-quality teacher preparation under part 686. We also 
explain in the previous section why TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs 
at TEACH Grant-eligible institutions meet the proposed definition of 
high-quality teacher preparation program.
    An IHE that is an eligible institution as defined in 34 CFR part 
600 and meets the financial responsibility standards established in 34 
CFR part 668, subpart L, or that qualifies under an alternative 
standard in 34 CFR 668.175 would be considered a TEACH Grant-eligible 
institution if it provides a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program and has 
entered into an agreement with an IHE described in paragraph (i) or 
(iv) under the definition of TEACH Grant-eligible institution to 
provide courses necessary for its students to begin a career in 
teaching. While teacher preparation programs are evaluated under the 
title II reporting system, TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs would not 
be evaluated under the title II reporting system. In order to ensure 
that TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs provide their students with a 
pathway to teaching, proposed paragraph (iii) of the definition of 
Teach Grant-eligible institution in proposed Sec.  686.2(e) would 
require that the relevant TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program enter into 
an agreement with an IHE described in paragraphs (i) or (iv) of the 
definition (an IHE with a teacher preparation program or a post-
baccalaureate program) to provide courses necessary for its students to 
begin a career in teaching. TEACH Grant recipients would, therefore, 
have access to necessary teacher preparation training to supplement and 
enhance their substantive knowledge and ensure they are prepared to 
teach.

TEACH Grant-eligible program

    Statute: The HEA does not define the term ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program.''
    Current Regulations: Current Sec.  686.2(d) defines ``TEACH Grant-
eligible program'' as an eligible program, as defined in 34 CFR 668.8, 
that is a program of study designed to prepare an individual to teach 
as a highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field and leads to a 
baccalaureate or master's degree, or is a post-baccalaureate program of 
study. A two-year program of study acceptable for full credit toward a 
baccalaureate degree is considered to be a program of study that leads 
to a baccalaureate degree.
    Proposed Regulations: The Department proposes to amend the 
definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible program'' under current Sec.  
686.2(d). (Note that we would redesignate current Sec.  686.2(d) as 
proposed Sec.  686.2(e), and the definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program'' would now be in Sec.  686.2(e).) A TEACH Grant-eligible 
program would no longer be defined simply as a program of study. 
Rather, under our proposed revisions to the definition, to be a TEACH 
Grant-eligible program, the program would have to be a high-quality 
teacher preparation program (as that term would be defined in proposed 
Sec.  686.2(e)) that is designed to prepare an individual to teach as a 
highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field and leads to a 
baccalaureate or master's degree, or is a post-baccalaureate program of 
study. Further, under the proposed definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program,'' a

[[Page 71847]]

two-year program of study acceptable for full credit toward a 
baccalaureate degree must be in a high-quality teacher preparation 
program (as that term would be defined in proposed Sec.  686.2(e)) to 
be considered a program of study that leads to a baccalaureate degree.
    Reasons: The Department is proposing these changes in order to 
implement the statutory requirement that to be a TEACH-Grant eligible 
program, the program must be a high-quality teacher preparation 
program. Simply offering a baccalaureate, master's, or post-
baccalaureate degree is not sufficient for a program to be deemed 
``high-quality.'' The Secretary believes determinations of quality 
should be based on indicators of effectiveness linked to the academic 
content and teaching skills of new teachers from teacher preparation 
programs, specifically the indicators that States use to evaluate 
programs under part 612. The importance of focusing on high-quality 
teacher preparation programs is discussed further under the heading 
``High-quality teacher preparation program and TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program.''

Educational Service Agency and School or Educational Service Agency 
Serving Low-Income Students (Low-Income School)

    For a discussion related to the proposed additions of the defined 
terms ``educational service agency'' and ``school or educational 
service agency serving low-income students (low-income school),'' 
please refer to our preamble discussion under the heading ``Service 
Obligations for the TEACH Grant program: Teaching Service Performed for 
an Educational Service Agency (34 CFR 686.2, 686.12, 686.32, 686.40, 
and 686.43),'' later in this document.

Sec. Sec.  686.3(c), 686.11(a)(1)(iii), and 686.37(a)(1) Duration of 
Student Eligibility for TEACH Grants

    Statute: Section 420M(d)(1) and (d)(2) of the HEA include a number 
of TEACH Grant eligibility provisions, including a provision stating 
that the maximum amount an undergraduate or post-baccalaureate student 
may receive in TEACH Grants is $16,000 and that the maximum amount a 
graduate student may receive in TEACH Grants is $8,000. However, 
neither this section nor any other section of the statute addresses the 
duration of student eligibility for TEACH Grants when a previously 
eligible TEACH Grant program is no longer considered TEACH Grant-
eligible.
    Current Regulations: Current Sec.  686.3(a) provides that an 
undergraduate or post-graduate student enrolled in a TEACH Grant-
eligible program may receive the equivalent of up to four Scheduled 
Awards (as defined in Sec.  686.2(d)) during the period the student is 
completing the first undergraduate program of study and first post-
baccalaureate program of study. Current Sec.  686.3(b) provides that a 
graduate student is eligible to receive the equivalent of up to two 
Scheduled Awards during the period required for the completion of a 
TEACH Grant-eligible master's degree program of study. Current Sec.  
686.3 does not address duration of student eligibility for a student 
who is enrolled in a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program that loses eligibility subsequent to the 
student's receipt of a TEACH Grant.
    Proposed Regulations: The Department proposes to revise current 
Sec.  686.3 by adding a new paragraph (c). This new paragraph would 
clarify that an otherwise eligible student who received a TEACH Grant 
for enrollment in a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program would remain eligible to receive additional TEACH 
Grants to complete that program even if the program the student was 
enrolled in was subsequently no longer considered a TEACH Grant-
eligible program or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program. Additionally, 
otherwise eligible students who received a TEACH Grant for enrollment 
in a program before July 1 of the year these proposed regulations 
become effective would remain eligible to receive additional TEACH 
Grants to complete that program even if the program the student 
enrolled in is not a TEACH Grant-eligible program under proposed Sec.  
686.2(e).
    Consistent with this change to proposed Sec.  686.3, we would also 
amend current Sec.  686.11(a)(1)(iii) to add that an otherwise eligible 
student who received a TEACH Grant and who is completing a program 
under proposed Sec.  686.3(c) would be eligible to receive a TEACH 
Grant.
    Finally, we would amend current Sec.  686.37(a)(1), as it relates 
to institutional reporting requirements, to require that an IHE provide 
to the Secretary information about the eligibility of each TEACH Grant 
recipient awarded a TEACH Grant under proposed Sec.  686.3(c).
    Reasons: In the proposed regulations, program eligibility is linked 
to title II reporting and, to be eligible, STEM programs must maintain 
a certain percentage of students who fulfill a year of the service 
obligation within three years of graduating. As a result, program 
eligibility may change from year to year. The Secretary believes that a 
student who begins a TEACH Grant-eligible program or TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program and receives a TEACH Grant should not be 
penalized if the program the student attends is subsequently not 
considered to be a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program. In such a case, we believe that the student 
should continue to be eligible to receive a TEACH Grant under proposed 
Sec. Sec.  686.3(c) and 686.11(a)(1)(iii). Because a student who 
receives one TEACH Grant is obligated to fulfill the requirements of 
the agreement to serve--generally that the student teach full-time as a 
highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field in a low-income school 
for four years within eight years after the student completes his or 
her program--the Secretary believes it would be unfair to deny a 
student additional TEACH Grants to complete a program that lost TEACH 
Grant eligibility after the student received a TEACH Grant for that 
program and incurred a service obligation.
    We would also make corresponding changes to student eligibility 
requirements for the TEACH Grant program as well as to institutional 
reporting requirements for students receiving TEACH Grants under these 
circumstances to reflect this provision.

Service Obligations for the TEACH Grant Program: Teaching Service 
Performed for an Educational Service Agency (Sec. Sec.  686.2, 686.12, 
686.32, 686.40, and 686.43)

    Statute: Section 420N(b) of the HEA requires that a TEACH Grant 
recipient, as a condition of receiving a TEACH Grant, serve as a full-
time highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field at an elementary or 
secondary school serving low-income children (low-income school) for 
not less than four academic years within eight years of completing the 
course of study for which the recipient received a TEACH Grant.
    A ``low-income school'' is described in section 465(a)(2)(A) of the 
HEA as:
    (1) A public or other nonprofit private elementary or secondary 
school or an educational service agency that has been determined by the 
Secretary, after consultation with the State educational agency in the 
State in which the school is located, to be a school in which the 
number of children meeting a measure of poverty under section 
1113(a)(5) of the ESEA exceeds 30 percent of the total number of 
children enrolled in such

[[Page 71848]]

school, and is in a school district of an LEA that is eligible for 
assistance under part A, title I of the ESEA; or
    (2) a public or other nonprofit private elementary school or 
secondary school or location operated by an educational service agency 
that has been determined by the Secretary, after consultation with the 
State educational agency of the State in which the educational service 
agency operates, to be a school or location at which the number of 
children taught who meet a measure of poverty under section 1113(a)(5) 
of the ESEA exceeds 30 percent of the total number of children taught 
at such school or location.
    The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-315) 
(HEOA) amended section 465(a)(2)(A) of the HEA to include educational 
service agencies in the description of a low-income school, and added a 
new section 481(f) that provides that the term ``educational service 
agency'' has the meaning given the term in section 9101 of the ESEA.
    Current Regulations: The current regulations governing the TEACH 
Grant program do not reflect the fact that a TEACH Grant recipient may 
fulfill his or her service obligation to teach in a low-income school 
by teaching in a school or location operated by an educational service 
agency.
    Proposed Regulations: In proposed Sec.  686.2(e) (current Sec.  
686.2(d)), the Department proposes to define ``educational service 
agency'' to mean a regional public multiservice agency authorized by 
State statute to develop, manage, and provide services or programs to 
LEAs, as defined in section 9101 of the ESEA, as amended.
    In proposed Sec.  686.2(e) (current Sec.  686.2(d)), we would also 
remove the term ``school serving low-income students (low-income 
school)'' and its definition and replace them with the term ``school or 
educational service agency serving low-income students (low-income 
school)'' and its definition. We would make conforming changes in other 
provisions that currently refer to ``school serving low-income students 
(low-income school).'' Specifically, we would amend Sec. Sec.  
686.12(b)(1)(i) and (b)(2) (Agreement to serve); 686.32(a)(3)(ii), 
(c)(4)(iii), and (c)(4)(v) (Counseling requirements); 686.40(b) and (f) 
(Documenting the service obligation); and 686.43(a)(1) (Obligation to 
repay the grant), to add references to an ``educational service 
agency'' as appropriate, to make it clear that a TEACH Grant recipient 
can satisfy his or her agreement to serve in a low-income school by 
teaching in a school or location operated by an educational service 
agency.
    Reasons: We are proposing to amend Sec. Sec.  686.2, 686.12, 
686.32, 686.40, and 686.43 of the TEACH Grant program regulations to 
reflect the statutory change made by the HEOA to section 465(a)(2)(A) 
of the HEA that allows a TEACH Grant recipient to satisfy his or her 
service obligation to teach in a low-income school by teaching in an 
educational service agency, and we are adopting the definition of that 
term from section 9101 of the ESEA as required by section 481(f) of the 
HEA. A TEACH Grant recipient can satisfy his or her service obligation 
by teaching in a Head Start program provided by an educational service 
agency at an elementary school or secondary school or other location 
that meets the poverty requirement.

Service Obligations for the TEACH Grant Program: Teaching in a High-
Need Field (Sec. Sec.  686.12 and 686.32)

    Statute: As stated in the previous discussion, section 420N(b) of 
the HEA requires a TEACH Grant recipient to serve as a full-time 
highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field at a low-income school as 
a condition of receiving a TEACH Grant. Section 420N(b)(1)(C) of the 
HEA describes high-need fields as mathematics, science, foreign 
languages, bilingual education, special education, reading specialist, 
or another field documented as high-need by the Federal Government, 
State government, or LEA, and approved by the Secretary.
    The HEOA added section 420N(d)(1) to the HEA to provide that, for 
fields documented as high-need by the Federal Government, State 
government, or LEA, and approved by the Secretary, a TEACH Grant 
recipient may fulfill his or her service obligation by teaching in a 
field that was designated as high-need when the recipient applied for 
the grant, even if the field is no longer designated as high-need when 
the recipient begins teaching. This change became effective on July 1, 
2010.
    Current Regulations: The definition of ``high-need field'' in 
current Sec.  686.2 is similar to the statutory definition of the term 
included in section 420N(b)(1)(C) of the HEA. As in section 
420N(b)(1)(C) of the HEA, in the definition of ``high-need field'' in 
current Sec.  686.2(d), a high-need field that is not specified in the 
regulation must be documented as high-need by the Federal Government, 
State government, or LEA, and approved by the Secretary, in order for 
it to be determined a high-need field. The definition of ``high-need 
field'' in current Sec.  686.2(d) also specifies that the high-need 
field must be listed in the Department's annual Teacher Shortage Area 
Nationwide Listing (Nationwide List) in accordance with 34 CFR 
682.210(q), to be included as a high-need field.
    Under current Sec.  686.12(d), a TEACH Grant recipient may satisfy 
his or her service obligation by teaching in a high-need field that is 
listed in the Nationwide List only if that field is designated by a 
State as high-need and included in the Nationwide List at the time the 
recipient begins qualifying teaching in that field in that State.
    Under current Sec.  686.40(c)(2), if a grant recipient begins 
qualified full-time teaching service in a State in a high-need field 
designated by that State and listed in the Nationwide List and in 
subsequent years that high-need field is no longer designated by the 
State in the Nationwide List, the grant recipient will be considered to 
continue to perform qualified full-time teaching service in 
satisfaction of his or her agreement to serve.
    Proposed Regulations: We propose to add a new paragraph (d) to 
current Sec.  686.12 to reflect the statutory change made by the HEOA 
to section 420N(d)(1) of the HEA.
    Specifically, proposed Sec.  686.12(d) would provide that, in order 
for a grant recipient's teaching service in a high-need field listed in 
the Nationwide List to count toward satisfying the recipient's service 
obligation, the high-need field in which he or she prepared to teach 
must be listed in the Nationwide List for the State in which the grant 
recipient begins teaching in that field--
    (1) At the time the grant recipient begins qualifying teaching 
service in that field (even if that field subsequently loses its high-
need designation for that State); or
    (2) For teaching service performed on or after July 1, 2010, at the 
time the grant recipient begins qualifying teaching service in that 
field or when the grant recipient signed the agreement to serve or 
received the TEACH Grant (even if that field subsequently loses its 
high-need designation for that State before the grant recipient begins 
qualifying teaching service).
    The proposed regulations would also make technical changes to Sec.  
686.32(a)(3)(iii)(B) and (c)(4)(iv)(B), regarding initial and exit 
counseling provided to a TEACH Grant recipient, to reflect the 
statutory change to section 420N(d)(1) of the HEA and to be consistent 
with proposed Sec.  686.12(d).
    Reasons: Proposed Sec.  686.12(d) would implement the statutory 
change to section 420N(d)(1) of the HEA by the

[[Page 71849]]

HEOA discussed above. To implement this provision of the HEA, we are 
proposing regulations, in Sec.  686.12(d), that interpret the term 
``when the recipient applied for the grant'' to relate to the date when 
the recipient signed the agreement to serve or received the TEACH 
Grant, because the use of two dates provides both the Department and 
the TEACH Grant recipient with the most flexibility. Currently, the 
Department already tracks the date the recipient signs the agreement to 
serve, and the date a grant recipient receives a TEACH Grant.
    While we did consider using the date the TEACH Grant recipient 
filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for this 
determination, we declined to take this approach because the 
Department's TEACH Grant servicing system does not currently contain 
the FAFSA filing date, and adding this information to the TEACH Grant 
servicing system would require expensive changes. We do not believe 
these system changes are necessary in light of other alternatives 
available.
    We believe that permitting the use of either date is also 
beneficial for TEACH Grant recipients. The Nationwide List is published 
on an award year basis, and it is possible that the date a grant 
recipient signs the agreement to serve and the date he or she receives 
the grant could fall in different award years. Using either date 
provides the grant recipient with a choice of which Nationwide List to 
use in determining which high-need field to pursue as a course of 
study. The TEACH Grant recipient can also be assured that, when the 
grant recipient begins teaching, service done in that high-need field 
will qualify as eligible service.

Eligibility for a New TEACH Grant After Receiving a Discharge of the 
TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve Based on Total and Permanent Disability 
(Sec.  686.11)

    Statute: Section 420N(d)(2) of the HEA authorizes the Secretary to 
establish categories of extenuating circumstances under which a TEACH 
Grant recipient who is unable to fulfill all or part of the recipient's 
service obligation may be excused from fulfilling that portion of the 
recipient's service obligation.
    Current Regulations: Current Sec.  686.42(b) provides that a TEACH 
Grant recipient's agreement to serve is discharged if the recipient 
becomes totally and permanently disabled, as that term is defined in 34 
CFR 682.200(b), and applies for, and satisfies the eligibility 
requirements for, a total and permanent disability discharge of a 
Direct Loan in accordance with 34 CFR 685.213. The TEACH Grant 
eligibility requirements in current Sec.  686.11 do not address the 
eligibility of a TEACH Grant recipient for a new TEACH Grant after 
receiving a discharge of the agreement to serve based on total and 
permanent disability.
    Proposed Regulations: We propose to add a new paragraph to Sec.  
686.11 to address the eligibility of a TEACH Grant recipient for a new 
TEACH Grant after receiving a discharge of the agreement to serve based 
on total and permanent disability. Proposed Sec.  686.11(d) would 
provide that, if a student's previous TEACH Grant service obligation or 
title IV, HEA loan was discharged based on total and permanent 
disability, the student is eligible to receive a new TEACH Grant only 
if the student:
     Obtains a certification from a physician that the student 
is able to engage in substantial gainful activity as defined in 34 CFR 
685.102(b);
     Signs a statement acknowledging that neither the service 
obligation for the TEACH Grant the student receives nor any previously 
discharged service agreement on which the grant recipient is required 
to resume repayment in accordance with Sec.  686(d)(1)(iii) can be 
discharged in the future on the basis of any impairment present when 
the new grant is awarded, unless that impairment substantially 
deteriorates and the grant recipient applies for, and meets the 
eligibility requirements for, a discharge in accordance with 34 CFR 
685.213; and
     For a situation in which the student receives a new TEACH 
Grant within three years of the date that any previous TEACH Grant 
service obligation or title IV loan was discharged due to a total and 
permanent disability in accordance with Sec.  686.42(b), 34 CFR 
685.213(b)(7)(i)(B), 34 CFR 674.61(b)(6)(i)(B), or 34 CFR 
682.402(c)(6)(i)(B), the grant recipient acknowledges that he or she is 
once again subject to the terms of the previously discharged TEACH 
Grant agreement to serve in accordance with Sec.  686.42(b)(5) before 
receiving the new grant and resumes repayment on the previously 
discharged loan in accordance with Sec.  685.213(b)(47), 34 CFR 
674.61(b)(6), or 34 CFR 682.402(c)(6).
    Reasons: We are proposing to add eligibility requirements that 
require a TEACH Grant recipient to be subject to the terms of a 
previously discharged TEACH Grant agreement to serve, and to resume 
repayment on any previously discharged loan before receiving a new 
TEACH Grant, because the receipt of a new TEACH Grant, which requires 
the grant recipient to work as a teacher, amounts to an implicit 
acknowledgement that the recipient is able to engage in substantial 
gainful activity and is therefore no longer totally and permanently 
disabled. We are also proposing to add eligibility requirements to 
address this situation in order to make the TEACH Grant program 
regulations consistent with and conform to the rules governing borrower 
eligibility for a new HEA, title IV loan after receiving a total and 
permanent disability discharge on a prior loan.

Discharge of the TEACH Grant Agreement To Serve Based on the Total and 
Permanent Disability of the TEACH Grant Recipient (Sec.  686.42(b))

    Statute: Section 420N(d)(2) of the HEA provides the Secretary with 
regulatory authority to establish categories of extenuating 
circumstances under which a TEACH Grant recipient who is unable to 
fulfill all or part of his or her service obligation may be excused 
from fulfilling that portion of the service obligation.
    Current Regulations: Current Sec.  686.42(b) provides for a 
discharge of the service obligation if the TEACH Grant recipient 
applies for, and satisfies the eligibility requirements for, a total 
and permanent disability discharge of a Direct Loan in 34 CFR 685.213.
    Proposed Regulations: We propose to remove current Sec.  
686.42(b)(2), which provides that the eight-year time period in which 
the grant recipient must complete the service obligation remains in 
effect during the conditional discharge period described in 34 CFR 
685.213(c)(3) unless the grant recipient is eligible for a suspension 
based on a condition that is a qualifying reason for leave under the 
Family Medical Leave Act.
    We would also remove current Sec.  686.42(b)(3), which requires 
that interest continues to accrue on each TEACH Grant disbursement 
unless and until the grant recipient's agreement to serve is discharged 
by the Secretary.
    In addition, we would remove current Sec.  686.42(b)(4) and modify 
current Sec.  686.42(b)(2) to provide that, if at any time the 
Secretary determines that the grant recipient does not meet the 
requirements of the three-year period following the discharge in 34 CFR 
685.213(b)(5), the Secretary will notify the grant recipient that the 
grant recipient's obligation to satisfy the terms of the agreement to 
serve is reinstated.
    Finally, we would add new Sec.  686.42(b)(3) to clarify that the 
Secretary's notification under Sec.  686.42(b)(2) would include the 
reason or reasons for reinstatement, provide

[[Page 71850]]

information on how the grant recipient may contact the Secretary if the 
grant recipient has questions about the reinstatement or believes that 
the agreement to serve was reinstated based on incorrect information, 
inform the grant recipient that interest accrual will resume on TEACH 
Grant disbursements made prior to the date of the discharge, and inform 
the TEACH Grant recipient that he or she must satisfy the service 
obligation within the portion of the eight-year period that remained 
after the date of the discharge.
    Reasons: The current total and permanent disability discharge 
provisions in Sec.  686.42(b) of the TEACH Grant regulations are 
modeled on the Direct Loan Program regulations and provide that, if a 
TEACH Grant recipient becomes totally and permanently disabled, the 
grant recipient's service obligation is discharged if the TEACH Grant 
recipient applies for, and satisfies the same eligibility requirements 
for, a total and permanent disability discharge of a Direct Loan in 34 
CFR 685.213. Much like a Direct Loan borrower who cannot repay his or 
her loan because of a total and permanent disability, a disabled TEACH 
Grant recipient cannot comply with the service obligation because he or 
she cannot work and earn money. The Department processes TEACH Grant 
applications for total and permanent disability in the same manner it 
processes applications for the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) and 
Direct Loan programs. On November 1, 2012, we published final 
regulations that amended the Perkins, FFEL, and Direct Loan program 
regulations (77 FR 66088) to streamline the total and permanent 
disability discharge application process and provide more detailed 
information in the various notifications received by the borrower. We 
are proposing to amend the provisions authorizing the discharge of a 
TEACH Grant recipient's agreement to serve based on total and permanent 
disability to conform to the changes to the discharge process set forth 
in the November 1, 2012 final regulations.

Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) for Teacher Preparation Proposed 
Regulations
    Under Executive Order 12866, the Secretary must determine whether 
this regulatory action is ``significant'' and, therefore, subject to 
the requirements of the Executive Order and subject to review by the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Section 3(f) of Executive Order 
12866 defines a ``significant regulatory action'' as an action likely 
to result in regulations that may--
    (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more, 
or adversely affect a sector of the economy; productivity; competition; 
jobs; the environment; public health or safety; or State, local or 
tribal governments or communities in a material way (also referred to 
as ``economically significant'' regulations);
    (2) Create serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an 
action taken or planned by another agency;
    (3) Materially alter the budgetary impacts of entitlement grants, 
user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients 
thereof; or
    (4) Raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal 
mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles stated in the 
Executive order.
    This proposed regulatory action is a significant regulatory action 
subject to review by OMB under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866.
    We have also reviewed these regulations pursuant to Executive Order 
13563, published on January 21, 2011 (76 FR 3821), which supplements 
and explicitly reaffirms the principles, structures, and definitions 
governing regulatory review established in Executive Order 12866. To 
the extent permitted by law, Executive Order 13563 requires that an 
agency--
    (1) Propose or adopt regulations only upon a reasoned determination 
that their benefits justify their costs (recognizing that some benefits 
and costs are difficult to quantify);
    (2) Tailor their regulations to impose the least burden on society, 
consistent with obtaining regulatory objectives, taking into account, 
among other things, and to the extent practicable, the costs of 
cumulative regulations;
    (3) In choosing among alternative regulatory approaches, select 
those approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential 
economic, environmental, public health and safety, and other 
advantages; distributive impacts; and equity);
    (4) To the extent feasible, specify performance objectives, rather 
than specifying the behavior or manner of compliance that regulated 
entities must adopt; and
    (5) Identify and assess available alternatives to direct 
regulation, including providing economic incentives to encourage the 
desired behavior, such as user fees or marketable permits, or providing 
information upon which choices can be made by the public.
    We emphasize as well that Executive Order 13563 requires agencies 
``to use the best available techniques to quantify anticipated present 
and future benefits and costs as accurately as possible.'' In its 
February 2, 2011, memorandum (M-11-10) on Executive Order 13563, the 
Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs within the Office of 
Management and Budget emphasized that such techniques may include 
``identifying changing future compliance costs that might result from 
technological innovation or anticipated behavioral changes.''
    We are issuing these proposed regulations only upon a reasoned 
determination that their benefits justify their costs and we selected, 
in choosing among alternative regulatory approaches, those approaches 
that maximize net benefits. Based on this analysis and the reasons 
stated in the preamble, the Department believes that these proposed 
regulations are consistent with the principles in Executive Order 
13563.
    In this Regulatory Impact Analysis we discuss the need for 
regulatory action, the potential costs and benefits, net budget 
impacts, assumptions, limitations, and data sources, as well as 
regulatory alternatives we considered. Although the majority of the 
costs related to information collection are discussed within this RIA, 
elsewhere in this NPRM under Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we also 
identify and further explain burdens specifically associated with 
information collection requirements.

I. Need for Regulatory Action

    Recent international assessments of science, reading, and math 
knowledge have revealed that the United States is significantly behind 
other countries in preparing students to compete in the global 
economy.\27\ Although many factors influence student achievement, a 
large body of research has used value-added analysis to demonstrate 
that teacher quality is the largest in-school factor affecting student 
achievement.\28\

[[Page 71851]]

We use ``value-added'' analysis and related terms to refer to 
statistical methods that use changes in the academic achievement of 
students over time to isolate and estimate the effect of particular 
factors, such as family, school, or teachers, on changes in student 
achievement.\29\ One study found that the difference between having a 
teacher who performed at a level one standard deviation below the mean 
and a teacher who performed at a level one standard deviation above the 
mean was equivalent to student learning gains of a full year's worth of 
knowledge.\30\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ Kelly, D., Xie, H., Nord, C.W., Jenkins, F., Chan, J.Y., 
and Kastberg, D. ``Performance of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students in 
Mathematics, Science, and Reading Literacy in an International 
Context: First Look at PISA 2012 (NCES 2014-024),'' U.S. Department 
of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Washington, 
DC (2013). http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2014/2014024rev.pdf.
    \28\ William Sanders and June C. Rivers, ``Cumulative and 
Residual Effects of Teachers on Future Student Academic 
Achievement,'' Research report, Knoxville, TN, University of 
Tennessee, Value-Added Research and Assessment Center, (1996); 
Steven G. Rivkin, Eric A. Hanushek, and Thomas A. Kane, ``Teachers, 
Schools, and Academic Achievement.'' Econometrica 73, No. 2 (2005): 
417-58; Jonah Rockoff, ``The Impact of Individual Teachers on 
Student Achievement: Evidence from Panel Data.'' American Economic 
Review 94, No. 2 (2004): 247-52.
    \29\ For more information on approaches to value-added analysis, 
see also: Henry I. Braun, ``Using Student Progress to Evaluate 
Teachers: A Primer on Value-Added Models.'' Princeton, NJ, 
Educational Testing Service (2005); William J. Sanders, 
``Comparisons Among Various Educational Assessment Value-Added 
Models,'' Presentation at the Power of Two--National Value-Added 
Conference, Battelle for Kids, Columbus, OH, (October 16, 2006).
    \30\ Eric A. Hanushek, ``The Trade-Off between Child Quantity 
and Quality,'' Journal of Political Economy, 100, No. 1 (1992): 84-
117.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A number of factors are associated with teacher quality, including 
academic content knowledge, in-service training, and years of 
experience, but researchers and policymakers have begun to examine 
whether some of these student achievement discrepancies can be 
explained by differences in the preparation their teachers received 
before entering the classroom.\31\ An early influential study on this 
topic found that the effectiveness of teachers in public schools in New 
York City who were prepared through different teacher preparation 
programs varied in statistically significant ways, as measured by the 
value added by these teachers.\32\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ Douglas Harris and Timothy Sass, ``Teacher Training, 
Teacher Quality, and Student Achievement.'' Journal of Public 
Economics 95, (2011): 798-812; Daniel Aaronson, Lisa Barrow, and 
William Sanders, ``Teachers and Student Achievement in the Chicago 
Public High Schools.'' Journal of Labor Economics 25, No. 1 (2007): 
95-135; Donald J. Boyd, et al., ``The Narrowing Gap in New York City 
Teacher Qualifications and its Implications for Student Achievement 
in High-Poverty Schools,'' Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 
27, No. 4 (2008): 793-818.
    \32\ Donald J. Boyd, et al., ``Teacher Preparation and Student 
Achievement.'' Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis 31, No. 4 
(2009): 416-440.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Subsequent studies have examined the value-added scores of teachers 
prepared through different teacher preparation programs in, Missouri, 
Louisiana, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington.\33\ Many of these 
studies have found statistically significant differences between 
teachers prepared at different preparation programs. For example, State 
officials in Tennessee and Louisiana have worked with researchers to 
examine whether student achievement could be used to inform teacher 
preparation program accountability. After controlling for observable 
differences in students, researchers in Tennessee found that the most 
effective teacher preparation programs in that State produced graduates 
that were two to three times more likely than other new teachers to be 
in the top quintile of teachers in a particular subject area, as 
measured by increases in the achievement of their students, with the 
least-effective programs producing teachers that were equally likely to 
be in the bottom quintile.\34\ Analyses based on Louisiana data on 
student growth linked to the programs that prepared students' teachers 
found few statistically significant differences in teacher 
effectiveness.\35\ Although these findings did not achieve statistical 
significance, three teacher preparation programs produced new teachers 
who appeared, on average, to be as effective as teachers with at least 
two years of experience, based on growth in student achievement in four 
or more content areas.\36\ A study analyzing differences between 
teacher preparation programs in Washington based on the value-added 
scores of their graduates also found few statistically significant 
differences, but the authors argued that the differences were 
educationally meaningful.\37\ In math, the average difference between 
teachers from the highest performing program and the lowest performing 
program was approximately 1.5 times the difference in performance 
between students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches and those 
who are not, while in reading the average difference was 2.3 times 
larger.\38\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \33\ Cory Koedel, et al., ``Teacher Preparation Programs and 
Teacher Quality: Are There Real Differences Across Programs?'' 
Working Paper 79, Washington, DC: National Center for Longitudinal 
Data Education Research (2012); Gary T. Henry, et al., ``Teacher 
Preparation Program Effectiveness Report.'' Research brief, Chapel 
Hill, NC: Carolina Institute for Public Policy (2011); Dan 
Goldhaber, et al., ``The Gateway to the Profession: Assessing 
Teacher Preparation Programs Based on Student Achievement,'' 
Economics of Education Review, 34(2013), pp. 29-44.
    \34\ Tennessee Higher Education Commission. ``Report Card on the 
Effectiveness of Teacher Training Programs, 2010'' Knoxville, TN: 
Tennessee Higher Education Commission (2010).
    \35\ Kristin A. Gansle, et al., ``Value Added Assessment of 
Teacher Preparation in Louisiana: 2005-2006 to 2008-2009,'' 
Technical report, Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University 
(2010).
    \36\ Ibid.
    \37\ Dan Goldhaber, et al., ``The Gateway to the Profession: 
Assessing Teacher Preparation Programs Based on Student 
Achievement.'' Economics of Education Review, 34 (2013), pp. 29-44.
    \38\ Ibid. 1.5 times the difference between students eligible 
for free or reduced price lunch is approximately 12 percent of a 
standard deviation, while 2.3 times the difference is approximately 
19 percent of a standard deviation.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In contrast to these findings, Koedel et al. found very small 
differences in effectiveness between teachers prepared at different 
programs in Missouri.\39\ The vast majority of variation in teacher 
effectiveness was within programs, instead of between programs.\40\ 
However, the authors note that the lack of variation between programs 
in Missouri could reflect a lack of competitive pressure to spur 
innovation within traditional teacher preparation programs.\41\ A 
robust evaluation system that included outcomes could spur innovation 
and increase differentiation between teacher preparation programs.\42\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \39\ Cory Koedel, et al., ``Teacher Preparation Programs and 
Teacher Quality: Are There Real Differences Across Programs?'' 
Working Paper 79, Washington, DC: National Center for Longitudinal 
Data Education Research (2012).
    \40\ Ibid.
    \41\ Ibid.
    \42\ Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Department acknowledges that there is debate in the research 
community about the specifications that should be used when conducting 
value-added analyses of the effectiveness of teachers prepared through 
different preparation programs,\43\ but also recognizes that the field 
is moving in the direction of weighing value-added analyses in 
assessments of teacher preparation program quality.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \43\ See Kata Mihaly, et al., ``Where You Come From or Where You 
Go? Distinguishing Between School Quality and the Effectiveness of 
Teacher Preparation Program Graduates.'' Working Paper 63, 
Washington, DC: National Center for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in 
Education Research (2012), for a discussion of issues and 
considerations related to using school fixed effects models to 
compare the effectiveness of teachers from different teacher 
preparation programs who are working in the same school.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thus, despite the methodological debate in the research community, 
CAEP,\44\ a union of two formerly independent national accrediting 
agencies, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education 
(NCATE) and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC), has 
developed new standards that require, among other measures, evidence 
that students completing a teacher preparation program contribute to an 
expected level of student growth.\45\ The new standards are currently 
voluntary for the more than 900 education preparation providers who 
participate in the education preparation

[[Page 71852]]

accreditation system. Participating institutions account for nearly 60% 
of the providers of educator preparation in the United States, and 
their enrollments account for nearly two-thirds of newly prepared 
teachers. The new standards will be required for accreditation 
beginning in 2016.\46\ The standards are an indication that the 
effectiveness ratings of teachers trained at teacher preparation 
programs are increasingly being used as a way to evaluate teacher 
preparation program performance. The research on teacher preparation 
program effectiveness is relevant to the elementary and secondary 
schools that rely on teacher preparation programs to recruit and select 
talented individuals and prepare them to become future teachers. In 
2011-2012 (the most recent year for which data are available), 203,701 
individuals completed either a traditional teacher preparation program 
or an alternative route program. The National Center for Education 
Statistics (NCES) projects that by 2020, States and districts will need 
to hire as many as 350,000 teachers each year due to teacher retirement 
and attrition and increased student enrollment.\47\ In order to meet 
the needs of schools and districts, States may have to expand 
traditional and alternative route programs to prepare more teachers, 
find new ways to recruit and train qualified individuals, or reduce the 
need for new teachers by reducing attrition or developing different 
staffing models. Better information on the quality of teacher 
preparation programs could help State and local educational agencies to 
make sound staffing decisions.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \45\ CAEP Accreditation Standards as Approved by the CAEP Board 
of Directors, 2013. Council for the Accreditation of Educator 
Preparation. http://caepnet.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/final_board_approved1.pdf.
    \46\ Statement by Mary Brabeck Board Chair, Council for the 
Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and Gale and Ira 
Drukier Dean and Professor of Applied Psychology Steinhardt School 
of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University 
Before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions 
Teacher Preparation: Ensuring a Quality Teacher in Every Classroom 
March 25, 2014.
    \47\ U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education 
Statistics, ``Projections of Education Statistics to 2020,'' 
Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education (2011): Table 16.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Despite research suggesting that the academic achievement of 
students taught by graduates of different teacher preparation programs 
may vary with regard to their teacher's program, analyses linking 
student achievement to teacher preparation programs have not been 
conducted and made available publicly for teacher preparation programs 
in all States. Congress has recognized the value of assessing and 
reporting on the quality of teacher preparation, and requires States 
and IHEs to report detailed information about the quality of teacher 
preparation programs in the State under the HEA. When reauthorizing the 
title II reporting system, members of Congress noted a goal of having 
teacher preparation programs explore ways to assess the impact of their 
programs' graduates on student academic achievement. In fact, the 
report accompanying the House Bill (H. Rep. 110-500) included the 
following statement, ``[i]t is the intent of the Committee that teacher 
preparation programs, both traditional and those providing alternative 
routes to state certification, should strive to increase the quality of 
individuals graduating from their programs with the goal of exploring 
ways to assess the impact of such programs on student's academic 
achievement.''
    Moreover, in roundtable discussions and negotiated rulemaking 
sessions held by the Department, stakeholders repeatedly expressed 
concern that the current title II reporting system provides little 
meaningful data on the quality of teacher preparation programs or the 
impact of those programs' graduates on student achievement. Currently, 
States must annually calculate and report data on more than 400 data 
elements, and IHEs must report on more than 150 elements. While some 
information requested in the current reporting system is statutorily 
required, other elements--such as whether the IHE requires a 
personality test prior to admission--are neither required by statute 
nor provide information that is particularly useful to the public. 
Thus, stakeholders stressed at the negotiated rulemaking sessions that 
the current system is too focused on inputs and that outcome-based 
measures would provide more meaningful information.
    Similarly, even some of the statutorily required data elements in 
the current reporting system do not provide meaningful information on 
program performance and how program graduates are likely to perform in 
a classroom. For example, the HEA requires IHEs to report both scaled 
scores on licensure tests and pass rates for students who complete 
their teacher preparation programs. Yet existing research provides 
mixed findings on the relationship between licensure test scores and 
teacher effectiveness.\48\ This may be because most licensure tests 
were designed to measure the knowledge and skills of prospective 
teachers but not necessarily to predict classroom effectiveness.\49\ 
The predictive value of licensure exams is further eroded by the 
significant variation in State pass/cut scores on these exams, with 
many States setting pass scores at a very low level. The National 
Council on Teacher Quality found that every State except Massachusetts 
sets its pass/cut scores on content assessments for elementary school 
teachers below the average score for all test takers, and most States 
set pass/cut scores at the 16th percentile or lower.\50\ Further, even 
with low pass/cut scores, some States allow teacher candidates to take 
licensure exams multiple times. Some States also permit IHEs to exclude 
students who have completed all program coursework but have not passed 
licensure exams when the IHEs report pass rates on these exams for 
individuals who have completed teacher preparation programs under the 
current title II reporting system. This may explain, in part, why 
States and IHEs reported an average pass rate on licensure or 
certification exams of 96 percent for individuals who completed 
traditional teacher preparation programs in the 2009-10 academic year, 
a less than reliable indicator of program quality.\51\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \48\ Charles T. Clotfelter, Helen F. Ladd, and Jacob Vigdor, 
``Teacher Credentials and Student Achievement: Longitudinal Analysis 
with Student Fixed Effects.'' Economics of Education Review 26, no. 
6 (2010): 673-682; Dan Goldhaber, ``Everyone's Doing It, But What 
Does Teacher Testing Tell Us about Teacher Effectiveness?'' The 
Journal of Human Resources 42, no. 4 (2007): 765-794; Richard Buddin 
and Gema Zamarro, ``Teacher Qualifications and Student Achievement 
in Urban Elementary Schools.'' Journal of Urban Economics 66, no. 
(2009): 103-115.
    \49\ Goldhaber, 2007.
    \50\ National Council on Teacher Quality, State Teacher Policy 
Yearbook, 2011. Washington, DC: National Council on Teacher Quality 
(2011). For more on licensure tests, see U.S. Department of 
Education, Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development, 
Policy and Program Studies Service, Recent Trends in Mean Scores and 
Characteristics of Test-Takers on Praxis II Licensure Tests. 
Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education (2010).
    \51\ U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary 
Education, ``Preparing and Credentialing the Nation's Teachers: The 
Secretary's Ninth Report on Teacher Quality,'' Washington, DC, 2013. 
https://title2.ed.gov/Public/TitleIIReport13.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thus, while the current title II reporting system produces detailed 
and voluminous data about teacher preparation programs, the data convey 
suboptimal indications of program quality as measured by how program 
graduates will perform in a classroom. This lack of meaningful data 
prevents school districts, principals, and prospective teacher 
candidates from making informed choices, creating a market failure due 
to imperfect information.
    On the demand side, school districts lack information about the 
past performance of teachers from different

[[Page 71853]]

teacher preparation programs and may rely on inaccurate assumptions 
about the quality of teacher preparation programs when recruiting and 
hiring new teachers. An accountability system that provided information 
about how teacher preparation program graduates are likely to perform 
in a classroom and how likely they are to stay in the classroom would 
be valuable to school districts and principals seeking to efficiently 
recruit, hire, train, and retain high-quality educators. Such a system 
could help to reduce teacher attrition, a particularly important 
problem because many new teachers do not remain in the profession, with 
more than a quarter of new teachers leaving the teaching profession 
altogether within three years of becoming classroom teachers.\52\ High 
teacher turnover rates are problematic because research has 
demonstrated that, on average, student achievement increases 
considerably with more years of teacher experience in the first three 
through five years of teaching.\53\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \52\ Richard M Ingersoll, ``Is There Really a Teacher 
Shortage?'' University of Washington Center for the Study of 
Teaching and Policy, (2003). http://depts.washington.edu/ctpmail/PDFs/Shortage-RI-09-2003.pdf.
    \53\ Ronald F. Ferguson and Helen F. Ladd, ``How and Why Money 
Matters: An Analysis of Alabama Schools,'' In H. F. Ladd (Ed.), 
Holding Schools Accountable: Performance-based Reform in Education. 
Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution (1996): 265-298; Eric 
Hanushek, et al., ``The Market for Teacher Quality.'' Working Paper 
11154, Cambridge, MA: National Bureau for Economic Research (2005); 
Robert Gordon, Thomas J. Kane, and Douglas O. Staiger, ``Identifying 
Effective Teachers Using Performance on the Job.'' Discussion Paper 
2006-01, Washington, DC: The Hamilton Project, The Brookings 
Institution (2006); Charles T. Clotfelter, Helen F. Ladd, and Jacob 
L. Vigdor, ``How and Why Do Teacher Credentials Matter for Student 
Achievement?'' Working Paper 2, Washington, DC: National Center for 
Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research (2007); Thomas 
J. Kane, Jonah E. Rockoff, and Douglas O. Staiger, ``What Does 
Certification Tell Us About Teacher Effectiveness? Evidence from New 
York City.'' Economics of Education Review 27, no. 6 (2008): 615-31.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    On the supply side, when considering which program to attend, 
prospective teachers lack comparative information about the placement 
rates and effectiveness of program graduates. Teacher candidates may 
enroll in a program without the benefit of information on employment 
rates post-graduation, employer and graduate feedback on program 
quality, and, most importantly, without understanding how well the 
program prepared prospective teachers to be effective in the classroom. 
NCES data indicate that 66 percent of certified teachers who received 
their bachelor's degree in 2008 borrowed an average of $22,905 to 
finance their undergraduate education.\54\ The average base salary for 
full-time teachers with a bachelor's degree in their first year of 
teaching in public elementary and secondary schools is $34,800.\55\ 
Thus, two-thirds of prospective teacher candidates may incur debt 
equivalent to 65 percent of their starting salary in order to attend 
teacher preparation programs without access to reliable indicators of 
how well these programs will prepare them for classroom teaching or 
help them find a teaching position in their chosen field. A better 
accountability system with more meaningful information would enable 
prospective teachers to make more informed choices while also enabling 
and encouraging States, IHEs, and alternative route providers to 
monitor and continuously improve the quality of their teacher 
preparation programs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \54\ U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education 
Statistics, Baccalaureate and Beyond Longitudinal Study. Washington, 
DC: U.S. Department of Education (2009).
    \55\ U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education 
Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics, 2011. Washington, DC: 
U.S. Department of Education (2012): Table 79.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The lack of meaningful data also prevents States from restricting 
program credentials to programs with the demonstrated ability to 
prepare more effective teachers, or accurately identifying low-
performing and at-risk teacher preparation programs and helping these 
programs improve. Not surprisingly, States have not identified many 
programs as low-performing or at-risk based on the data currently 
collected. In the latest title II reporting requirement submissions, 
the majority of States did not classify any teacher preparation 
programs as low-performing or at-risk.\56\ Eleven States and the 
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico reported teacher preparation programs that 
were low-performing or at-risk. Twenty-nine of these programs were 
identified as at-risk and nine were designated as low-performing. Of 
the 38 programs identified by States as low-performing or at-risk, 22 
were based in IHEs that participate in the TEACH Grant program. Thirty-
nine States did not identify a single low-performing program.\57\ Since 
these reporting requirements were established twelve years ago, thirty-
four States have never identified a single IHE with an at-risk or low-
performing program.\58\ Under the proposed regulations, every State 
would collect and report more meaningful information about teacher 
preparation program performance which would enable them to target 
scarce public funding more efficiently through direct support to more 
effective teacher preparation programs and State financial aid to 
prospective students attending those programs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \56\ U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary 
Education, ``Preparing and Credentialing the Nation's Teachers: The 
Secretary's Ninth Report on Teacher Quality,'' Washington, DC, 2013 
https://title2.ed.gov/Public/TitleIIReport13.pdf.
    \57\ Ibid.
    \58\ Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Similarly, under the current title II reporting system, the Federal 
government is unable to ensure that financial assistance for 
prospective teachers is used to help students attend programs with the 
best record for producing effective classroom teachers. The proposed 
regulations would help accomplish this by ensuring that program 
performance information is available for all teacher preparation 
programs in all States and restricting eligibility for Federal TEACH 
grants to programs that are rated at least ``effective.''
    Most importantly, elementary and secondary students, especially 
those students in high-need schools and communities who are 
disproportionately taught by recent teacher preparation program 
graduates, would be the ultimate beneficiaries of an improved teacher 
preparation program accountability system.\59\ Such a system would 
better focus State and Federal resources on promising teacher 
candidates while informing teacher candidates and potential employers 
about high-performing teacher preparation programs and enabling States 
to more effectively identify and improve low-performing teacher 
preparation programs. Such an accountability system would thereby 
increase the likelihood of a quality teacher in every classroom.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \59\ Several studies have found that inexperienced teachers are 
far more likely to be assigned to high-poverty schools, including 
Donald J. Boyd, et al., ``The Narrowing Gap in New York City Teacher 
Qualifications and Its Implications for Student Achievement in High-
Poverty Schools.'' Working Paper 10, Washington, DC: National Center 
for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research (2007); 
Charles T. Clotfelter, et al., ``High-Poverty Schools and the 
Distribution of Teachers and Principals.'' Working Paper 1, 
Washington, DC: National Center for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in 
Education Research (2007); Tim R. Sass, et al., ``Value Added of 
Teachers in High-Poverty Schools and Lower-Poverty Schools.'' 
Working Paper 52, Washington, DC: National Center for Analysis of 
Longitudinal Data in Education Research (2010).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Recognizing the benefits of improved information on teacher 
preparation program quality and associated accountability, several 
States have already developed and implemented systems that map teacher 
effectiveness data back to teacher preparation programs. The proposed 
regulations

[[Page 71854]]

would help ensure that all States generate useful data that are 
accessible to the public to support efforts to improve teacher 
preparation programs.
    The Department's plan to improve teacher preparation has three core 
elements: (1) Reduce the reporting burden on IHEs while encouraging 
States to make use of data on teacher effectiveness to build an 
effective teacher preparation accountability system driven by 
meaningful indicators of quality (title II accountability system); (2) 
reform targeted financial aid for students preparing to become teachers 
by directing scholarship aid to students attending higher-performing 
teacher preparation programs (TEACH Grants); and (3) provide more 
support for IHEs that prepare high-quality teachers from diverse 
backgrounds.
    The proposed regulations address the first two elements of this 
plan. Improving institutional and State reporting and State 
accountability builds on the work that States like Louisiana and 
Tennessee have already started, as well as work that is underway in 
States receiving grants under Phase One or Two of the Race to the Top 
Fund.\60\ All of these States have, will soon have, or plan to have 
statewide systems that track the academic growth of a teacher's 
students by the teacher preparation program from which the teacher 
graduated and, as a result, will be better able to identify the teacher 
preparation programs that are producing effective teachers and the 
policies and programs that need to be strengthened to scale those 
effects.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \60\ The applications and Scopes of Work for States that 
received a grant under Phase One or Two of the Race to the Top Fund 
are available online at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/awards.html.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Consistent with feedback the Department has received from 
stakeholders, under the proposed regulations States would assess the 
quality of teacher preparation programs according to the following 
indicators: (1) Student learning outcomes of students taught by 
graduates of teacher preparation programs (as measured by aggregating 
learning outcomes of students taught by graduates of each teacher 
preparation program); (2) job placement and retention rates of these 
graduates (based on the number of program graduates that are hired into 
teaching positions and whether they stay in those positions); and (3) 
survey outcomes for surveys of program graduates and their employers 
(based on questions about whether or not graduates of each teacher 
preparation program are prepared to be effective classroom teachers).
    The proposed regulations would help provide meaningful information 
on program quality to prospective teacher candidates, school districts, 
States, and IHEs that administer traditional teacher preparation 
programs and alternative routes to State certification or licensure 
programs. The proposed regulations would make data available that also 
can inform academic program selection, program improvement, and 
accountability.
    During public roundtable discussions and subsequent negotiated 
rulemaking sessions, the Department consulted with representatives from 
the teacher preparation community, States, teacher preparation program 
students, teachers, and other stakeholders about the best way to 
produce more meaningful data on the quality of teacher preparation 
programs while also reducing the reporting burden on States and teacher 
preparation programs where possible. The proposed regulations specify 
three types of outcomes States would use to assess teacher preparation 
program quality, but States would retain discretion to select the most 
appropriate methods to collect and report these data. In order to give 
States and stakeholders sufficient time to develop these methods, the 
Department proposes to implement the requirements of these proposed 
regulations over several years.

II. Summary of Proposed Regulations

    The Department seeks to add a new Part 612--Title II Reporting 
System to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) relating to the teacher 
preparation program accountability system under title II of the HEA. 
There are three subparts in proposed Part 612. Subpart A includes a 
section on the scope and purpose and definitions. Subpart B describes 
the requirements for institutional and State reporting on teacher 
preparation program quality. Subpart C addresses termination of title 
IV eligibility when a teacher preparation program is determined to be 
low-performing, and how, after loss of the State's approval or State's 
financial support, a low-performing teacher preparation program may 
regain eligibility to accept or enroll students receiving title IV, HEA 
funds.
    In a related provision, the Department proposes to amend Part 686--
Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) 
Grant Program, to align applicable definitions with the proposed new 
Part 612--Title II Reporting System and strengthen institutional and 
program eligibility requirements for the TEACH Grant program to ensure 
that students who obtain TEACH grants are in high quality teacher 
preparation programs or high quality science, technology, engineering, 
and mathematics (STEM) programs.
    The following table summarizes the key definitions and requirements 
in the proposed regulations and, for the sections applying to TEACH 
Grants, compares these requirements to the current regulations.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Key issues                         Current law                     Proposed regulations
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
At-risk teacher preparation program.....  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_An ``at-risk
                                                                        teacher preparation program'' is defined
                                                                        as a teacher preparation program that is
                                                                        identified as at-risk of being
                                                                        identified as low-performing by a State
                                                                        based on the State's assessment of
                                                                        teacher preparation program performance
                                                                        under proposed Sec.   612.4.
Consultation with stakeholders..........  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   614.2(c)(1)_Each State
                                                                        must establish, in consultation with a
                                                                        representative group of stakeholders,
                                                                        the procedures for assessing and
                                                                        reporting the performance of each
                                                                        teacher preparation program in the
                                                                        State. The information reported must
                                                                        include the weighting of indicators to
                                                                        be used, the method of aggregating
                                                                        programs, State-level rewards or
                                                                        consequences for designated performance
                                                                        levels, and opportunities for programs
                                                                        to appeal.
Effective teacher preparation program...  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_An ``effective
                                                                        teacher preparation program'' is defined
                                                                        as a teacher preparation program that is
                                                                        identified as effective by a State based
                                                                        on the State's assessment of teacher
                                                                        preparation program performance under
                                                                        proposed Sec.   612.4.

[[Page 71855]]

 
Employment Outcomes.....................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_Data, measuring
                                                                        the teacher placement rate, the teacher
                                                                        placement rate calculated for high-need
                                                                        schools, the teacher retention rate, and
                                                                        the teacher retention rate calculated
                                                                        for high-need schools on the
                                                                        effectiveness of a teacher preparation
                                                                        program in preparing, placing, and
                                                                        supporting new teachers consistent with
                                                                        local education agency (LEA) needs. For
                                                                        purposes of assessing employment
                                                                        outcomes, a State may, in its
                                                                        discretion, assess traditional and
                                                                        alternative route teacher preparation
                                                                        programs differently based on whether
                                                                        there are differences in the programs
                                                                        that affect employment outcomes,
                                                                        provided that the varied assessments
                                                                        result in equivalent levels of
                                                                        accountability and reporting.
Exceptional teacher preparation program.  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_An ``exceptional
                                                                        teacher preparation program'' is defined
                                                                        as a teacher preparation program that is
                                                                        identified as exceptional by a State
                                                                        based on the State's assessment of
                                                                        teacher preparation program performance
                                                                        under proposed Sec.   612.4.
High-need school........................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_A ``high-need
                                                                        school'' would be defined as a school
                                                                        that, based on the most recent data
                                                                        available, is in the highest quartile of
                                                                        schools in a ranking of all schools
                                                                        served by a local educational agency,
                                                                        ranked in descending order by percentage
                                                                        of students from low-income families
                                                                        enrolled in such schools, as determined
                                                                        by the local educational agency based on
                                                                        a single or a composite of two or more
                                                                        of the following measures of poverty:
                                                                        (a) The percentage of students aged 5
                                                                        through 17 in poverty counted; (b) the
                                                                        percentage of students eligible for a
                                                                        free or reduced price school lunch under
                                                                        the Richard B. Russell National School
                                                                        Lunch Act; (c) the percentage of
                                                                        students in families receiving
                                                                        assistance under the State program
                                                                        funded under part A of title IV of the
                                                                        Social Security Act; (d) the percentage
                                                                        of students eligible to receive medical
                                                                        assistance under the Medicaid program.
                                                                        Alternatively, a school may be
                                                                        considered a ``high-need school,'' if,
                                                                        in the case of an elementary school, the
                                                                        school serves students not less than 60
                                                                        percent of whom are eligible for a free
                                                                        or reduced price school lunch under the
                                                                        Richard B. Russell National School Lunch
                                                                        Act; or in the case of any other school
                                                                        that is not an elementary school, the
                                                                        other school serves students not less
                                                                        than 45 percent of whom are eligible for
                                                                        a free or reduced price school lunch
                                                                        under the Richard B. Russell National
                                                                        School Lunch Act.
Low-performing teacher preparation        No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_A ``low-
 program.                                                               performing teacher preparation program''
                                                                        is defined as a teacher preparation
                                                                        program that is identified as low-
                                                                        performing by a State based on the
                                                                        State's assessment of teacher
                                                                        preparation program performance under
                                                                        proposed Sec.   612.4.
New Teacher.............................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_A ``new
                                                                        teacher'' is defined as a recent
                                                                        graduate or alternative route
                                                                        participant who, within the last three
                                                                        title II reporting years, has received a
                                                                        level of certification or licensure that
                                                                        allows him or her to serve in the State
                                                                        as a teacher of record for K-12 students
                                                                        and, at the State's discretion, for
                                                                        preschool students.
Recent Graduate.........................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_A ``recent
                                                                        graduate'' is defined as an individual
                                                                        documented as having met all the
                                                                        requirements of the teacher preparation
                                                                        program within the last three title II
                                                                        reporting years.
Reporting Threshold (for performance of   No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.4_States must report
 teacher preparation program).                                          annually on programs with 25 or more new
                                                                        teachers (program size threshold). At a
                                                                        State's discretion, it can choose a
                                                                        lower number as the reporting threshold
                                                                        (lower program size threshold). For any
                                                                        teacher preparation program that
                                                                        produces fewer than the program size
                                                                        threshold or the lower program size
                                                                        threshold, the State must annually
                                                                        report on the program by aggregating
                                                                        data by using one of three prescribed
                                                                        methods. If aggregation under these
                                                                        methods would not yield the program size
                                                                        threshold or the lower program size, or
                                                                        if reporting such data would be
                                                                        inconsistent with Federal or State
                                                                        privacy and confidentiality laws and
                                                                        regulations, the State is not required
                                                                        to report data on that program.
Reporting Timeframe.....................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.3_Institutional
                                                                        reporting begins in October 2017 based
                                                                        on the 2016-2017 academic year.
                                                                       Proposed Sec.   612.4_Pilot State
                                                                        reporting begins in April 2018 based on
                                                                        data for new teachers in the 2016-2017
                                                                        academic year. Full State reporting
                                                                        begins in April 2019 based on data for
                                                                        new teachers in the 2017-2018 academic
                                                                        year.
Student growth..........................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Student
                                                                        growth'' is defined, for an individual
                                                                        student, as the change in student
                                                                        achievement in tested grades and
                                                                        subjects and the change in student
                                                                        achievement in non-tested grades and
                                                                        subjects between two or more points in
                                                                        time.
Student learning outcomes...............  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Student
                                                                        learning outcomes'' are defined, for
                                                                        each teacher preparation program in a
                                                                        State, as data on the aggregate learning
                                                                        outcomes of students taught by new
                                                                        teachers and calculated by the State
                                                                        using student growth, a teacher
                                                                        evaluation measure, or both.

[[Page 71856]]

 
Survey Outcomes.........................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Survey
                                                                        outcomes'' are defined as qualitative
                                                                        and quantitative data collected through
                                                                        survey instruments, including, but not
                                                                        limited to, a teacher survey and an
                                                                        employer survey, designed to capture
                                                                        perceptions of whether new teachers who
                                                                        are employed as teachers in their first
                                                                        year of teaching in the State where the
                                                                        teacher preparation program is located
                                                                        possess the skills needed to succeed in
                                                                        the classroom.
Teacher evaluation measure..............  No regulations.............  Proposed 612.2(d)_``Teacher evaluation
                                                                        measure'' is defined as, by grade span
                                                                        and subject area and consistent with
                                                                        statewide guidelines, the percentage of
                                                                        new teachers rated at each performance
                                                                        level under an LEA teacher evaluation
                                                                        system that differentiates teachers on a
                                                                        regular basis using at least three
                                                                        performance levels and multiple valid
                                                                        measures in determining each teacher's
                                                                        performance level. For purposes of this
                                                                        definition, multiple valid measures of
                                                                        performance levels must include, as a
                                                                        significant factor, data on student
                                                                        growth for all students (including
                                                                        English language learners and students
                                                                        with disabilities), and other measures
                                                                        of professional practice (such as
                                                                        observations based on rigorous teacher
                                                                        performance standards or other measures
                                                                        which may be gathered through multiple
                                                                        formats and sources, such as teacher
                                                                        portfolios and student and parent
                                                                        surveys).
Teacher placement rate..................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Teacher
                                                                        placement rate'' is defined as the
                                                                        combined, non-duplicated percentage of
                                                                        new teachers and recent graduates who
                                                                        have been hired in a full-time teaching
                                                                        position for the grade level, span, and
                                                                        subject area in which they were
                                                                        prepared. States may choose to exclude
                                                                        (1) new teachers or recent graduates who
                                                                        have taken positions in another State,
                                                                        in private schools, or that do not
                                                                        require State certification or (2) new
                                                                        teachers or recent graduates who have
                                                                        enrolled in graduate school or entered
                                                                        military service.
Teacher preparation entity..............  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Teacher
                                                                        preparation entity'' is defined as an
                                                                        institution of higher education or other
                                                                        organization that is authorized by the
                                                                        State to prepare teachers.
Teacher preparation program.............  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Teacher
                                                                        preparation program'' is defined as a
                                                                        program, whether traditional or
                                                                        alternative route, offered by a teacher
                                                                        preparation entity that leads to a
                                                                        specific State teacher certification or
                                                                        licensure in a specific field.
Teacher retention rate..................  No regulations.............  Proposed Sec.   612.2(d)_``Teacher
                                                                        retention rate'' is defined as any of
                                                                        the following rates, as determined by
                                                                        the State: (1) Percentage of new
                                                                        teachers hired in full-time positions
                                                                        who have served for at least three
                                                                        consecutive school years within five
                                                                        years of being granted a level of
                                                                        certification that allows them to serve
                                                                        as teachers of record; (2) percentage of
                                                                        new teachers who have been hired in full-
                                                                        time teaching positions that reached a
                                                                        level of tenure or other equivalent
                                                                        measures of retention within 5 years of
                                                                        being granted a level of certification
                                                                        that allows them to serve as teachers of
                                                                        record; or (3) 100% less the percentage
                                                                        of new teachers who have been hired in
                                                                        full-time teaching positions and whose
                                                                        employment was not continued by their
                                                                        employer for reasons other than
                                                                        budgetary constraints within five years
                                                                        of being granted a level of
                                                                        certification or licensure that allows
                                                                        them to serve as teachers of record.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                            Institutional Report Card
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Annual Reporting........................  20 U.S.C. 1022d_Required by  Proposed Sec.   612.3_Restates general
                                           statute with no current      statutory requirement for annual
                                           regulations. Under the       reporting. Under a revised reporting
                                           statute, every institution   calendar, beginning in October 2017
                                           of higher education that     requires each institution to submit the
                                           conducts a traditional       institutional report card in October of
                                           teacher preparation          each calendar year covering data from
                                           program or alternative       the prior academic year. Also requires
                                           routes to State              each institution of higher education
                                           certification or licensure   that is required to report under the
                                           program and that enrolls     statute to prominently and promptly post
                                           students receiving Federal   the institutional report card
                                           assistance under the HEA     information on the institution's Web
                                           must report to the State     site and, if applicable, on the teacher
                                           and the general public on    preparation program's portion of the
                                           the quality of its teacher   institution's Web site.
                                           preparation programs. The
                                           statute specifies certain
                                           information the
                                           institution must report.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 71857]]

 
                                                State Report Card
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Reporting Requirements..................  20 U.S.C. 1022d_No           Proposed Sec.   612.4_Restates general
                                           regulations. Each State      statutory requirement for annual
                                           that receives funds under    reporting. Under a revised reporting
                                           this Act shall provide the   calendar, beginning in April 2018
                                           Secretary, and make widely   requires each State to submit the State
                                           available to the general     report card in April of each calendar
                                           public, in a uniform and     year covering data from the prior
                                           comprehensible manner that   academic year. Also requires each State
                                           conforms with the            that is required to report under the
                                           definition and methods       statute to prominently and promptly post
                                           established by the           the State report card information on the
                                           Secretary, an annual State   State's Web site. Also requires States
                                           report card on the quality   to report: (1) Beginning in April 2019,
                                           of teacher preparation in    meaningful differentiations in teacher
                                           the State, both for          preparation program performance using at
                                           traditional teacher          least four performance levels_low-
                                           preparation programs and     performing teacher preparation program,
                                           for alternative routes to    at-risk teacher preparation program,
                                           State certification or       effective teacher preparation program,
                                           licensure programs. The      and exceptional teacher preparation
                                           statute specifies certain    program; (2) disaggregated data for each
                                           minimum information the      teacher preparation program of the
                                           State must report to the     indicators identified pursuant to Sec.
                                           Secretary.                   612.5; (3) an assurance of accreditation
                                                                        by a specialized organization, or an
                                                                        assurance that the program produces
                                                                        teacher candidates with content and
                                                                        pedagogical knowledge and quality
                                                                        clinical preparation who have met
                                                                        rigorous teacher candidate entry and
                                                                        exit qualifications; (4) the State's
                                                                        weighting of indicators in Sec.   612.5
                                                                        for assessing program performance; (5)
                                                                        State-level rewards or consequences
                                                                        associated with the designated
                                                                        performance levels; (6) the procedures
                                                                        established by the State in consultation
                                                                        with stakeholders, as described in Sec.
                                                                         612.4(c)(1) and the State's examination
                                                                        of its data collection and reporting, as
                                                                        described in Sec.   612.4(c)(2) in the
                                                                        report submitted in 2018 and every four
                                                                        years thereafter, and at any other time
                                                                        a State makes substantive changes to the
                                                                        weighting of the indicators and its
                                                                        procedures for assessing and reporting
                                                                        on the performance of each teacher
                                                                        preparation program in the State.
Indicators of Program Performance.......  20 U.S.C.                    Proposed Sec.   612.5_For purposes of
                                           1022d_Institutional report   reporting under Sec.   612.4, a State
                                           card includes licensure      must assess for each teacher preparation
                                           test pass rates and scaled   program within its jurisdiction,
                                           scores. State report card    indicators of academic content knowledge
                                           requires State to report     and teaching skills of new teachers from
                                           the criteria used to         that program. The indicators of academic
                                           assess the performance of    content knowledge and teaching skills
                                           each teacher preparation     must include, at a minimum, (1) student
                                           program, including           learning outcomes, employment outcomes,
                                           indicators of academic       and survey outcomes, and (2) whether the
                                           content knowledge and        program is accredited by a specialized
                                           teaching skills of           accrediting agency recognized by the
                                           students enrolled in the     Secretary for accreditation of
                                           program. No implementing     professional teacher education programs
                                           regulations.                 or provides teacher candidates with
                                                                        content and pedagogical knowledge and
                                                                        quality clinical preparation and has
                                                                        rigorous teacher candidate entry and
                                                                        exit qualifications.
Low-performing programs.................  20 U.S.C. 1022d_States must  Proposed Sec.   612.6_States must make
                                           identify low-performing      meaningful differentiations of teacher
                                           programs and programs at-    preparation programs among at least four
                                           risk of being identified     performance levels: (1) Exceptional, (2)
                                           as low-performing.           effective, (3) at-risk, and (4) low-
                                                                        performing. In identifying low-
                                                                        performing or at-risk teacher
                                                                        preparation programs, the State must use
                                                                        criteria that, at a minimum, include the
                                                                        indicators of academic content knowledge
                                                                        and teaching skills from 612.5,
                                                                        including, in significant part,
                                                                        employment outcomes for high-need
                                                                        schools and student learning outcomes.
                                                                        At a minimum, a State must provide
                                                                        technical assistance to improve the
                                                                        performance of each low-performing
                                                                        teacher preparation program in its
                                                                        State.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 71858]]

 
                                               TEACH Grant Program
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eligibility.............................  Sec.                         Sec.   686.11_The proposed regulations
                                           686.11_Undergraduate, post-  would add to the current regulations
                                           baccalaureate and graduate   that for a program to be TEACH Grant-
                                           students are eligible to     eligible, it must be a high-quality
                                           receive a TEACH Grant if     teacher preparation program. That means
                                           the student has submitted    that it must be a teacher preparation
                                           a complete application,      program that is classified by the State
                                           signed an agreement to       as effective or higher, or if it is a
                                           serve, is enrolled at a      STEM program, at least sixty percent of
                                           TEACH Grant-eligible         its TEACH Grant recipients must complete
                                           institution in a TEACH       at least one year of teaching that
                                           Grant-eligible program, is   fulfills the service obligation under
                                           completing coursework and    Sec.   686.40 within three years of
                                           other requirements           completing the program. Under the
                                           necessary to begin a         proposed definition for high-quality
                                           career in teaching or        teacher preparation program, the levels
                                           plans to before              of program performance as reported in
                                           graduating, meets the        State report cards in both the April
                                           relevant 3.25 GPA            2019 and the April 2020 State Report
                                           requirement or a score       Card for the 2020-2021 title IV HEA
                                           above the 75th percentile    award year would determine TEACH Grant
                                           on a nationally-normed       eligibility for the 2020-2021 academic
                                           standardized admissions      year. Subsequently, beginning with the
                                           test.                        2021-2022 title IV HEA award year, a
                                                                        program's eligibility would be based on
                                                                        the level of program performance
                                                                        reported in the State Report Card for
                                                                        two out of three years. The State Report
                                                                        Card ratings from April 2018 (if the
                                                                        State exercised its option to report the
                                                                        ratings using the new indicators) and
                                                                        April 2019 would not immediately impact
                                                                        TEACH Grant eligibility. Instead, the
                                                                        loss of TEACH Grant eligibility for low-
                                                                        performing or at-risk programs would
                                                                        become effective July 1, 2020.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

III. Regulatory Alternatives Considered

    The proposed regulations were developed with assistance from a 
negotiated rulemaking process in which different options were 
considered for several provisions. Among the alternatives the 
Department considered were various ways to reduce the volume of 
information States and teacher preparation programs are required to 
collect and report under the existing title II reporting system. One 
approach would have been to limit State reporting to items that are 
statutorily required. While this would reduce the reporting burden, it 
would not address the goal of enhancing the quality and usefulness of 
the data that are reported. Alternatively, by focusing the reporting 
requirements on student learning outcomes, employment outcomes, and 
teacher and employer survey data, and also providing States with 
flexibility in the specific methods they use to measure and weigh these 
outcomes, the proposed regulations would balance the desire to reduce 
burden with the need for more meaningful information.
    Additionally, during the negotiated rulemaking session, some non-
Federal negotiators spoke of the difficulty States would have 
developing the survey instruments, administering the surveys, and 
compiling and tabulating the results for the employer and teacher 
surveys. The Department offered to develop and conduct the surveys to 
alleviate additional burden and costs on States, but the non-Federal 
negotiators indicated that they preferred that States and teacher 
preparation programs conduct the surveys.
    One alternative considered in carrying out the statutory directive 
to direct TEACH Grants to ``high quality'' programs was to limit 
eligibility only to programs that States classified as ``exceptional'', 
positioning the grants more as a reward for truly outstanding programs 
than as an incentive for low-performing and at-risk programs to 
improve. In order to prevent a program's eligibility from fluctuating 
year-to-year based on small changes in evaluation systems that are 
being developed and to keep TEACH Grants available to a wider pool of 
students, including those attending teacher preparation programs 
producing satisfactory student learning outcomes, the Department and 
most non-Federal negotiators agreed that programs rated effective or 
higher would be eligible for TEACH Grants.
    The Department welcomes comments about the alternatives discussed 
here and will consider them in drafting the final regulations.

IV. Discussion of Costs, Benefits and Transfers

    The Department has analyzed the costs of complying with the 
proposed requirements. Due to uncertainty about the current capacity of 
States in some relevant areas and the considerable discretion the 
proposed regulations would provide States (e.g., the flexibility States 
would have to determine the weights to give to the various indicators 
of teacher preparation program performance), we cannot evaluate the 
costs of implementing the proposed regulations with absolute precision. 
However, we estimate that the total annualized cost of these 
regulations would be between $42.0 million and $42.1 million over ten 
years (see the Accounting Statement section of this document for 
further detail). Relative to these costs, the major benefit of these 
requirements, taken as a whole, would be better publicly available 
information on the effectiveness of teacher preparation programs that 
would be able to be used by prospective students in choosing programs 
to attend; employers in selecting teacher preparation program graduates 
to recruit, train, and hire; States in making funding decisions; and 
teacher preparation programs themselves in seeking to improve. The 
Department particularly invites comments on the cost estimates 
provided.
    The following is a detailed analysis of the estimated costs of 
implementing the specific proposed requirements, including the costs of 
complying with paperwork-related requirements, followed by a discussion 
of the anticipated benefits.\61\ The burden hours of implementing 
specific

[[Page 71859]]

paperwork-related requirements are also shown in the tables in the 
Paperwork Reduction Act section of this notice.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \61\ Unless otherwise specified, all hourly wage estimates for 
particular occupation categories were taken from Table 5: Full-time 
State and local government workers: Mean and median hourly, weekly, 
and annual earnings and mean weekly and annual hours, which was 
published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics based on data collected 
through the National Compensation Survey, 2010. This table provides 
the most recent published estimates of national average hourly wages 
for teachers and administrators in public elementary and secondary 
schools and is available on-line at: http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ocs/sp/nctb1479.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Title II Accountability System (HEA Title II Regulations)

    Section 205(a) of the HEA requires that each IHE that provides a 
teacher preparation program leading to State certification or licensure 
report on a statutorily enumerated series of data elements for the 
programs it provides. Section 205(b) of the HEA requires that each 
State that receives funds under the HEA provide to the Secretary and 
make widely available to the public information on the quality of 
traditional and alternative route teacher preparation programs that 
includes not less than the statutorily enumerated series of data 
elements it provides. The State must do so in a uniform and 
comprehensible manner, conforming with definitions and methods 
established by the Secretary. Section 205(c) of the HEA directs the 
Secretary to prescribe regulations to ensure the validity, reliability, 
accuracy, and integrity of the data submitted. Section 206(b) requires 
that IHEs assure the Secretary that their teacher training programs 
respond to the needs of LEAs, be closely linked with the instructional 
decisions new teachers confront in the classroom, and prepare 
candidates to work with diverse populations and in urban and rural 
settings, as applicable. Consistent with these statutory provisions, 
the Department proposes a number of regulations to ensure that the data 
reported by IHEs and States accurately report on the quality of all 
approved teacher preparation programs in the State. The following 
sections provide a detailed examination of the costs associated with 
each of these proposed regulatory provisions.

Institutional Report Card Reporting Requirements

    The proposed regulations would require that beginning on October 1, 
2017, and annually thereafter, each IHE that conducts a traditional 
teacher preparation program or alternative route to State certification 
or licensure program and enrolls students receiving title IV, HEA 
funds, report to the State on the quality of its program using an IRC 
prescribed by the Secretary.
    Under the current IRC, IHEs typically report at the entity level, 
rather than the program level, such that an IHE that administers 
multiple teacher preparation programs typically gathers data on each of 
those programs, aggregates the data, and reports the required 
information as a single teacher preparation entity on a single report 
card. By contrast, the proposed regulations generally would require 
that States report on program performance at the individual program 
level. The Department estimates that the initial burden for each IHE to 
adjust its recordkeeping systems in order to report the required data 
separately for each of its teacher preparation programs would be 4 
hours per IHE. In the most recent year for which data are available, 
1,522 IHEs submitted IRCs to the Department, for an initial estimated 
cost of $153,540.\62\ The Department further estimates that each of the 
1,522 IHEs would need to spend 78 hours to collect the data elements 
required for the IRC for its teacher preparation programs, for an 
annual cumulative cost of $2,944,020. We estimate that entering the 
required information into the information collection instrument would 
require 13.65 hours per entity, for a total cost of $523,950 to the 
1,522 IHEs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \62\ Unless otherwise specified, for paperwork reporting 
requirements, we use a wage rate of $25.22, which is based on a 
weighted national average hourly wage for full-time Federal, State 
and local government workers in office and administrative support 
(75%) and managerial occupations (25%), as reported by the Bureau of 
Labor Statistics in the National Occupational Employment and Wage 
Estimates, May 2012.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The proposed regulations would also require that each IHE provide 
the information reported on the IRC to the general public by 
prominently and promptly posting the IRC on the IHE's Web site and, if 
applicable, on the teacher preparation portion of the Web site. We 
estimate that each IHE would require 30 minutes to post the IRC for an 
annual cumulative cost of $19,190. The estimated total annual cost to 
IHEs to meet the proposed requirements concerning IRCs would be 
$3,670,600.

State Report Card Reporting Requirements

    Section 205(b) of the HEA requires each State that receives funds 
under the Act to report annually to the Secretary on the quality of 
teacher preparation in the State, both for traditional teacher 
preparation programs and for alternative routes to State certification 
or licensure programs, and to make this report widely available to the 
general public. As described in greater detail under the Paperwork 
Reduction Act section of this notice, the Department estimates that the 
50 States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, 
Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Freely Associated 
States, which include the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the 
Federated States of Micronesia, and Republic of Palau would each need 
235 hours to report the data required under the SRC, for an annual 
cumulative cost of $349,680.
    The Department proposes in Sec.  612.4(a)(2) of these regulations 
to require that States post the SRC on the State's Web site. Because 
all States already have at least one Web site in operation, we estimate 
that posting the SRC on an existing Web site would require no more than 
half an hour at a cost of $25.22 per hour. For the 50 States, the 
District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American 
Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of the 
Northern Mariana Islands, the Freely Associated States, which include 
the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of 
Micronesia, and Republic of Palau the total annual estimated cost of 
meeting this requirement would be $740.

Scope of State Reporting

    The costs associated with the reporting requirements in proposed 
Sec.  612.4(b) and (c) are discussed in the following paragraphs. The 
requirements regarding reporting of a teacher preparation program's 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills would not 
apply to the insular areas of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of 
the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the freely 
associated states of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the 
Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic of Palau. Due to their 
size and limited resources and capacity in some of these areas, we 
believe that the cost to these insular areas of collecting and 
reporting data on these indicators would not be warranted.

Reporting of Information on Teacher Preparation Program Performance

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), a State would be required to make 
meaningful differentiations in teacher preparation program performance 
using at least four performance levels--low-performing teacher 
preparation program, at-risk teacher preparation program, effective 
teacher preparation program, and exceptional teacher preparation 
program--based on the indicators in Sec.  612.5, including, in 
significant part, employment outcomes for high-need schools and student 
learning outcomes. Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1) would also require that 
no teacher preparation program is deemed effective or higher unless it 
has satisfactory or higher student learning outcomes. Because

[[Page 71860]]

States would have the discretion to determine the meaning of 
``significant'' and ``satisfactory,'' the Department assumes that 
States would consult with early adopter States or researchers to 
determine best practices for making such determinations and whether an 
underlying qualitative basis should exist for these terms. The 
Department estimates that State higher education authorities 
responsible for making State-level classifications of teacher 
preparation programs would require at least 35 hours to discuss methods 
for ensuring that meaningful differentiations are made in their 
classifications and defining ``significant'' and ``satisfactory.'' To 
estimate the cost per State, we assume that the State employee or 
employees would likely be in a managerial position (with national 
average hourly earnings of $44.42), for a total one-time cost for the 
50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto 
Rico of $80,840.

Fair and Equitable Methods

    Under Sec.  612.4(c)(1), the proposed regulations would require 
States to consult with a representative group of stakeholders to 
determine the procedures for assessing and reporting the performance of 
each teacher preparation program in the State. The proposed regulations 
specify that these stakeholders must include, at a minimum, 
representatives of leaders and faculty of traditional teacher 
preparation programs and alternative routes to State certification or 
licensure programs; students of teacher preparation programs; 
superintendents; school board members; elementary and secondary school 
leaders and instructional staff; elementary and secondary school 
students and their parents; IHEs that serve high proportions of low-
income or minority students, or English language learners; advocates 
for English language learners and students with disabilities; and 
officials of the State's standards board or other appropriate standards 
body. Since the proposed regulations would not prescribe any particular 
methods or activities, we expect that States would vary considerably in 
how they implement these requirements, depending on their population 
and geography and any applicable State laws concerning public meetings.
    In order to estimate the cost of implementing these requirements, 
we assume that the average State would need to convene at least three 
meetings with at least the following representatives from required 
categories of stakeholders: One administrator or faculty member from a 
traditional teacher preparation program, one administrator or faculty 
member from an alternative route teacher preparation program, one 
student from a traditional or alternative route teacher preparation 
program, one teacher or other instructional staff, one superintendent, 
one school board member, one student in elementary or secondary school 
and one of his or her parents, one administrator or faculty member from 
an IHE that serves high percentages of low-income or minority students, 
one representative of the interests of students who are English 
language learners, one representative of the interests of students with 
disabilities, and one official from the State's standards board or 
other appropriate standards body. To estimate the cost of participating 
in these meetings for the required categories of stakeholders, we 
assume that each meeting would require four hours of each participant's 
time and use the following national average hourly wages for full-time 
State and local government workers employed in these professions: 
Postsecondary education administrators, $45.75 (2 stakeholders); 
elementary or secondary education administrators, $50.42 (1 
stakeholder); postsecondary teachers, $44.76 (1 stakeholder); primary, 
secondary, and special education school teachers, $40.93 (1 
stakeholder). For the official from the State's standards board or 
other appropriate standards body, we used the national average hourly 
earnings of $59.20 for chief executives employed by Federal, State, and 
local governments. For the representatives of the interests of students 
who are English language learners and students with disabilities, we 
use the national average hourly earnings of $59.13 for lawyers in 
educational services (including private, State, and local government 
schools). For the opportunity cost to the elementary and secondary 
school student, we use the Federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. For 
the opportunity cost for his parent, we use the average hourly wage for 
all workers of $22.01. We use the same assumed wage rate for the school 
board official. For the student from a traditional or alternative route 
teacher preparation program, we use the 25th percentile of hourly wage 
for all workers of $10.81. We also assume that at least two State 
employees in managerial positions (with national average hourly 
earnings of $44.42) would attend each meeting, with one budget or 
policy analyst to assist them (with national average hourly earnings of 
$33.35).\63\ Based on these participants, we estimate that meeting the 
stakeholder consultation requirements through meetings would have a 
cumulative cost of $334,860 for the 50 States, the District of 
Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \63\ Unless otherwise noted, all wage rates in this section are 
based on average hourly earnings as reported by in the May 2012 
National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates from the Bureau 
of Labor Statistics. Where hourly wages were unavailable, we 
estimated hourly wages using average annual wages from this source 
and the average annual hours worked from the National Compensation 
Survey, 2010.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We invite comment on the extent to which States may have already 
established committees or other mechanisms that could be used to meet 
these requirements at little or no additional cost, as well as 
technologies that could reduce the cost of meeting these requirements.
    States would also be required to report on the State-level rewards 
or consequences associated with the designated performance levels and 
on the opportunities they provide for teacher preparation programs to 
challenge the accuracy of their performance data and classification of 
the program. Costs associated with implementing these requirements are 
estimated in the discussion of annual costs associated with the SRC.

Procedures for Assessing and Reporting Performance

    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4), a State would be required to 
ensure that teacher preparation programs in that State are included on 
the SRC, but with some flexibility due to the Department's recognition 
that reporting on teacher preparation programs consisting of a small 
number of prospective teachers could present privacy and data validity 
issues. The Department estimates that each State would need up to 14 
hours to review and analyze applicable State and Federal privacy laws 
and regulations and existing research or the practices of other States 
that set program size thresholds in order to determine the most 
appropriate aggregation level and procedures for its own teacher 
preparation program reporting, for an estimated, cumulative one-time 
cost to the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth 
of Puerto Rico of $43,050, based on the average national hourly 
earnings for a lawyer employed full-time by a State or local 
government.

Required Elements of the State Report Card

    For purposes of reporting under Sec.  612.4, each State would need 
to

[[Page 71861]]

establish indicators that would be used to assess the academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills of the graduates of teacher preparation 
programs within its jurisdiction. At a minimum, States must base their 
assessments on student learning outcomes, employment outcomes, survey 
outcomes, and whether or not the program is accredited by a specialized 
accrediting agency recognized by the Secretary for accreditation of 
professional teacher education programs, or provides teacher candidates 
with content and pedagogical knowledge, and quality clinical 
preparation, and has rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit 
qualifications.
    States would be required to report these outcomes for teacher 
preparation programs within their jurisdiction, with the only 
exceptions being for small programs for which aggregation under 
paragraph Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii) would not yield the program size 
threshold (or for a State that chooses a lower program size threshold, 
would not yield the lower program size threshold) for that program and 
for programs where reporting data would lead to conflicts with Federal 
or State privacy and confidentiality laws and regulations.

Student Learning Outcomes

    In Sec.  612.5, the proposed regulations would require that States 
assess the performance of teacher preparation programs based in part on 
data on the aggregate learning outcomes of students taught by new 
teachers prepared by those programs. States would have the option of 
calculating these outcomes using student growth, a teacher evaluation 
measure that includes student growth, or both. Regardless of whether 
they use student growth or a teacher evaluation measure to determine 
student learning outcomes, States would be required to link these data 
to new teachers and their teacher preparation programs. In the 
following analysis, we use available sources of information to assess 
the extent to which States appear to already have the capacity to 
measure student learning outcomes, using either student growth or 
teacher evaluation measures, and estimate the additional costs States 
that do not currently have this capacity might incur in order to meet 
the proposed requirements.

Tested Grades and Subjects

    Student growth is defined in the proposed regulations as the change 
in student achievement in tested grades and subjects and the change in 
student achievement in non-tested grades and subjects for an individual 
student between two or more points in time. To calculate student growth 
for grades and subjects in which assessments are required under section 
1111(b)(3) of the ESEA, States must use students' scores on the State's 
assessments under section 1111(b)(3) of the ESEA and may include other 
measures of student learning, provided they are rigorous, comparable 
across schools, and consistent with State guidelines.
    In order to receive a portion of the $48.6 billion in grant funds 
awarded under the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund (SFSF), each State 
was required to provide several assurances to demonstrate its progress 
in advancing reforms in critical areas, including an assurance that it 
provides teachers of reading/language arts and mathematics in grades in 
which the State administers assessments in those subjects with student 
growth data on their current students.\64\ Because all States have 
provided this assurance, we assume that the States would not need to 
incur any additional costs to measure student growth for these grades 
and subjects and would only need to link these outcomes to teacher 
preparation programs by first linking the students' teachers to the 
teacher preparation program from which they graduated.\65\ The costs of 
linking student outcomes to teacher preparation programs are discussed 
below.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \64\ State Fiscal Stabilization Fund; Final Requirements, 
Definitions, and Approval Criteria. 74 Federal Register 58436 
(November 12, 2008). For a description of the relevant indicator for 
this assurance (indicator (b)(2)), see also the summary of the final 
requirements issued by the Department, available online at: 
www2.ed.gov/programs/statestabilization/summary-requirements.doc.
    \65\ Each State's current application for SFSF funds, which 
includes assurances for all of the required SFSF indicators, is 
available online at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/statestabilization/resources.html.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Non-tested Grades and Subjects

    As of June 23, 2014, the Secretary has approved requests by 42 
States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 
for flexibility regarding specific requirements of NCLB in exchange for 
rigorous and comprehensive State-developed plans designed to improve 
educational outcomes for all students, close achievement gaps, increase 
equity, and improve the quality of instruction, and the Department 
continues to work with another three States pursuing similar 
flexibility agreements.\66\ In its request for flexibility, each State 
has committed to implementing statewide comprehensive teacher 
evaluations and been required to demonstrate how the State would 
evaluate teachers in all grades and subjects, both tested and non-
tested. Given this, and because the definition of a teacher evaluation 
measure in the proposed regulations aligns with the requirements for 
ESEA flexibility, the States that have been granted ESEA flexibility 
should not incur additional costs to measure student growth in non-
tested grades and subjects because these States would be able to use 
the percentage of new teachers in these grades and subjects who are 
rated at each performance level to report student learning outcomes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \66\ State applications for ESEA Flexibility, approval letters, 
and other related materials are available online at: http://www.ed.gov/esea/flexibility/requests.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To estimate the cost of measuring student growth for teachers in 
non-tested grades and subjects in the eight States that have not been 
approved for ESEA flexibility, we need to estimate the number of new 
teachers in these States. We first determined, using NCES data from the 
2011-2012 school year, that there are approximately 36,305 teachers in 
these States who appear to meet the proposed definition of new teachers 
because they have fewer than four years of classroom teaching 
experience.\67\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \67\ U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education 
Statistics, Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), ``Public School 
Teacher Data File,'' 2011-2012.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    While we believe it is unlikely that States will incur additional 
costs for measuring student growth for teachers in tested grades and 
subjects, for purposes of this cost estimate, we assume that all States 
will choose to implement the same process for all new teachers, 
regardless of their placement. This will likely generate an 
overestimate of actual costs that will be borne by the State.
    One method several States and districts are currently using to 
assess student growth for teachers of non-tested grades and subjects is 
student learning objectives. The Race to the Top Technical Assistance 
Network defines student learning objectives as ``a participatory method 
of setting measurable goals, or objectives, based on the specific 
assignment or class, such as the students taught, the subject matter 
taught, the baseline performance of the students, and the measurable 
gain in student performance during the course of instruction.'' \68\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \68\ Race to the Top Technical Assistance Network. ``Measuring 
Student Growth for Teachers in Non-Tested Grades and Subjects: A 
Primer.'' Technical brief, Washington, DC: ICF International, under 
contract with the U.S. Department of Education (2011).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    States would not be required to use student learning objectives to 
measure student growth, but we use it in this

[[Page 71862]]

analysis to estimate the costs a State would incur if they employed a 
similar method. To the extent that States employ different methods, the 
following estimates may overestimate or underestimate the costs 
involved. To estimate the cost of using student learning objectives to 
assess teachers in non-tested grades and subjects using student growth, 
we examined publicly-available State and district rubrics and 
guidelines. The guidance issued by the Rhode Island Department of 
Education included a detailed timeline and checklist that we used to 
develop an estimate of what it might cost the remaining States to 
develop and implement student learning objectives.\69\ The following 
estimate assumes that these States have no existing State or district-
level structures in place to assess student learning outcomes. Based on 
the specific steps required in the Rhode Island guidance, we estimate 
that, for the average teacher, developing and measuring progress 
against student learning objectives would require 6.85 hours of the 
teacher's time and 5.05 hours of an evaluator's time.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \69\ These estimates are based on analysis and interpretation 
conducted by U.S. Department of Education staff and should not be 
attributed to the Rhode Island Department of Education. This 
analysis was based primarily on the timeline and checklist, which 
begins on page 23, http://www.maine.gov/education/effectiveness/GuideSLO-Rhode%20Island.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    However, we believe that this estimate likely overstates the cost 
to States that already require annual evaluations of all new teachers 
because many of these evaluations would already encompass many of the 
activities in the framework. The National Council on Teacher Quality 
has reported that two of the eight States that have not received ESEA 
flexibility required annual evaluations of all new teachers and that 
those evaluations included at least some objective evidence of student 
learning.\70\ In these States, teachers and evaluators may require 
additional time to set appropriate targets and assess performance 
against those targets, but teachers and evaluators would already be 
meeting to discuss and assess the teacher's effectiveness. In cases 
where there is an existing teacher evaluation structure or mechanism 
into which student learning objectives could be incorporated with 
relatively limited additional time required, we estimate that teachers 
and evaluators would only need to spend a combined three hours to 
develop and measure against student learning objectives for the 4,629 
new teachers in these States, at an estimated total cost of $596,720.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \70\ National Council on Teacher Quality, 2013 State Teacher 
Policy Yearbook: National Summary Washington, DC: National Council 
on Teacher Quality (January 2014). States that require annual 
evaluations of all new teachers include California, Montana, 
Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wyoming.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If the remaining State opted to use a framework similar to the 
guidance provided by Rhode Island, we estimate that the cost to this 
State of developing and measuring against student learning objectives 
for an estimated 31,676 teachers would be $16,079,390.\71\ This 
estimate is based on an estimated 6.85 hours for teachers at the 
national average hourly wage of $38.96 for public elementary and 
secondary teachers and a 5.05 hours for evaluators at a derived 
estimated hourly wage of $45.00, which assumes that the evaluator would 
be a more experienced teacher serving as an academic coach.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \71\ Ibid. According to this report, Vermont does not require 
annual evaluations of new teachers.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We invite comments on these estimates and on the cost of 
calibrating existing student growth models to include these different 
types of student achievement data. Regardless of the method of 
assessing student growth for non-tested grades and subjects, States 
would need to link the teacher evaluation ratings or other indicators 
of student growth to the teacher preparation program from which the 
teacher graduated. The costs to States of making these linkages are 
discussed in the following section.

Linking Student Learning Outcomes to Teacher Preparation Programs

    Whether using student scores on State assessments, teacher 
evaluation ratings, or other measures of student growth, under the 
proposed regulations States must link the student learning outcomes 
data back to the teacher, and then back to that teacher's preparation 
program. The costs to States to comply with this requirement will 
depend, in part, on the data and linkages in their statewide 
longitudinal data system. Through the Statewide Longitudinal Data 
Systems (SLDS) program, the Department has awarded $575.7 million in 
grants to support data systems that, among other things, allow States 
to link student achievement data to individual teachers and to 
postsecondary education systems. Forty-seven States, the District of 
Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico have already received at 
least one grant under this program to support the development of these 
data systems, so we expect the cost to these States of linking student 
learning outcomes to teacher preparation programs would be lower than 
for the remaining States.
    According to information from the SLDS program in June 2014, nine 
States currently link K-12 teacher data including data on both teacher/
administrator evaluations and teacher preparation programs to K-12 
student data. An additional 11 States and the District of Columbia are 
currently in the process of establishing this linkage, and ten States 
and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico have plans to add this linkage to 
their systems in the during their SLDS grant. Based on this 
information, it appears that 30 States, the Commonwealth of Puerto 
Rico, and the District of Columbia either already have the ability to 
aggregate data on student achievement of students taught by program 
graduates and link those data back to teacher preparation programs or 
have committed to doing so; therefore, we do not estimate any 
additional costs for these States to comply with this aspect of the 
proposed regulations.
    During the negotiated rulemaking process and subsequent development 
of the proposed regulations, the Department consulted with experts 
familiar with the development of student growth models and longitudinal 
data systems. These experts indicated that the cost of calculating 
growth for students taught by individual teachers and aggregating these 
data according to the teacher preparation program that these teachers 
completed would vary among States. For example, in States in which data 
on teacher preparation programs are housed within different or even 
multiple different postsecondary data systems that are not currently 
linked to data systems for elementary through secondary education 
students and teachers, experts consulted by the Department suggested 
that a reasonable estimate of the cost of additional staff or vendor 
time to link and analyze the data would be $250,000 per State. For 
States that already have data systems that include data from elementary 
to postsecondary education levels, we estimate that the cost of 
additional staff or vendor time to analyze the data would be $100,000. 
Since we do not know enough about the data systems in the remaining 37 
States and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico to determine whether they 
are likely to incur the higher or lower estimate of costs, we averaged 
the higher and lower figure. Accordingly we estimate that the remaining 
20 States will need to incur an average cost of $175,000 to develop 
models to calculate growth for students taught by individual teachers 
and then

[[Page 71863]]

link these data to teacher preparation programs for a total cost of 
$3,500,000.

Employment Outcomes

    The Department proposes to require States to report employment 
outcomes, including data on both the teacher placement rate and the 
teacher retention rate and on the effectiveness of a teacher 
preparation program in preparing, placing, and supporting new teachers 
consistent with local educational needs. We have limited information on 
the extent to which States currently collect and maintain data on 
placement and retention for individual teachers.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b), States would be required to report 
annually, for each teacher preparation program, on the teacher 
placement rate, the teacher placement rate calculated for high-need 
schools, the teacher retention rate, and the teacher retention rate 
calculated for high-need schools. The Department proposes to define the 
teacher placement rate as the combined non-duplicated percentage of new 
teachers and recent graduates who have been hired in a full-time 
teaching position for the grade level, span, and subject area in which 
the new teacher or recent graduate was prepared. High-need schools 
would be defined in proposed Sec.  612.2(d) by using the definition of 
``high-need school'' in section 200(11) of the HEA. The proposed 
regulations would give States discretion to exclude those new teachers 
or recent graduates from this measure if they are teaching in a private 
school, teaching in another State, enrolled in graduate school, or 
engaged in military service. States would also have the discretion to 
treat this rate differently for alternative route and traditional route 
providers.
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) and the definition of teacher retention 
rate in proposed Sec.  612.2 would require a State to provide data on 
each teacher preparation program's teacher retention rate, using one of 
the following approaches: (a) The percentage of new teachers who have 
been hired in full-time teaching positions and served for periods of at 
least three consecutive school years within five years of being granted 
a level of certification that allows them to serve as teachers of 
record; (b) the percentage of new teachers who have been hired in full-
time teaching positions and reached a level of tenure or other 
equivalent measures of retention within five years of being granted a 
level of certification that allows them to serve as teachers of record; 
or (c) one hundred percent less the percentage of new teachers who have 
been hired in full-time teaching positions and whose employment was not 
continued by their employer for reasons other than budgetary 
constraints within five years of being granted a level of certification 
or licensure that allows them to serve as teachers of record. High-need 
schools would be defined in proposed Sec.  612.2 by using the 
definition of ``high-need school'' from section 200(11) of the HEA. The 
proposed regulations would give States discretion to exclude those new 
teachers or recent graduates from this measure if they are teaching in 
a private school (or other school not requiring State certification), 
another State, enrolled in graduate school, or serving in the military. 
States would also have the discretion to treat this rate differently 
for alternative route and traditional route providers.
    In its comments on the Department's Notice of Intention to Develop 
Proposed Regulations Regarding Teacher Preparation Reporting 
Requirements, the Data Quality Campaign reported that 50 States, the 
District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico all collect 
some certification information on individual teachers and that a subset 
of States collect the following specific information on teacher 
preparation or qualifications that is relevant to the requirements: 
Type of teacher preparation program (42 States), location of teacher 
preparation program (47 States), and year of certification (51 
States).\72\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \72\ Data Quality Campaign. ``ED's Notice of Intention to 
Develop Proposed Regulations Regarding Teacher Preparation Reporting 
Requirements: DQC Comments to Share Knowledge on States' Data 
Capacity.'' Available online at: www.dataqualitycampaign.org/files/HEA%20Neg%20Regs%20formatted.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Data from the SLDS program indicate that 24 States currently can 
link data on individual teachers with their teacher preparation 
programs, including information on their current certification status 
and placement. In addition, seven States are currently in the process 
of making these links, and ten States plan to add this capacity to 
their data systems, but have not yet established the link and process 
for doing so. Because these States would also maintain information on 
the certification status and year of certification of individual 
teachers, we assume they would already be able to calculate the teacher 
placement and retention rates for new teachers but may incur additional 
costs to identify recent graduates who are not employed in a full-time 
teaching position within the State. It should be possible to do this at 
minimal cost by matching rosters of recent graduates from teacher 
preparation programs against teachers employed in full-time teaching 
positions who received their initial certification within the last 
three years. Additionally, because States already maintain the 
necessary information in State databases to identify schools as ``high-
need,'' we do not believe there would be any appreciable additional 
cost associated with adding ``high-need'' flags to any accounting of 
teacher retention or placement rates in the State. We invite comment on 
what costs States would incur to do this.
    The remaining 11 States may need to collect additional information 
from teacher preparation programs and LEAs because they do not appear 
to be able to link information on the employment, certification, and 
teacher preparation program for individual teachers. If it is not 
possible to establish this link using existing data systems, States may 
need to obtain some or all of this information from teacher preparation 
programs or from the teachers themselves. The American Association of 
Colleges for Teacher Education reported that in 2012, 495 of 717 
institutions (or about 70%) had begun tracking their graduates into job 
placements. Although half of those institutions have successfully 
obtained placement information, these efforts suggest that States may 
be able to take advantage of work already underway.\73\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \73\ American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, 
``The Changing Teacher Preparation Profession: A report from AACTE's 
Professional Education Data System (PEDS),'' (2013).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For each of these 11 States, the Department estimates that 150 
hours may be required at the State level to collect information about 
new teachers employed in full-time teaching positions (including 
designing the data request instruments, disseminating them, providing 
training or other technical assistance on completing the instruments, 
collecting the data, and checking their accuracy), and a total 
estimated cost to the eleven States of $83,190, based on the national 
average hourly wage for education administrators of $50.42.

Survey Outcomes

    The Department also proposes to require States to report--again 
disaggregated for each teacher preparation program--qualitative and 
quantitative data from surveys of new teachers and their employers in 
order to capture their perceptions of whether new teachers who were 
prepared at a teacher preparation program in that State possess the 
skills needed to succeed in the classroom. The design and 
implementation of these surveys

[[Page 71864]]

would be determined by the State, but we provide the following 
estimates of costs associated with possible options for meeting this 
requirement.
    Some States and IHEs currently survey graduates or recent graduates 
of teacher preparation programs. According to experts consulted by the 
Department, depending on the number of questions and the size of the 
sample, some of these surveys have been administered quite 
inexpensively. One State conducted a survey of a stratified random 
sample of approximately 50 percent of its teacher preparation program 
graduates and estimated that it cost $5,000 to develop and administer 
the survey and $5,000 to analyze and report the data.\74\ Since these 
data will be used to assess and publicly report on the quality of each 
teacher preparation program, we expect that the cost of implementing 
the proposed regulations is likely to be higher, because States may 
need to survey a larger sample of teachers and their employers in order 
to capture information on all teacher preparation programs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \74\ Email correspondence with officials from the Oregon Teacher 
Standards and Practices Commission between June 4 and 19, 2012.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Another potential factor in the cost of the teacher and employer 
surveys would be the number and type of questions. We have consulted 
with researchers experienced in the collection of survey data, and they 
have indicated that it is important to balance the burden on the 
respondent with the need to collect adequate information. In addition 
to asking teachers and their employers whether graduates of particular 
teacher preparation programs are adequately prepared before entering 
the classroom, States may also wish to ask about course-taking and 
student teaching experiences, as well as to collect demographic 
information on the respondent, including information on the school 
environment in which the teacher is currently employed. Because the 
researchers we consulted stressed that teachers and their employers are 
unlikely to respond to a survey that requires more than 30 minutes to 
complete, we assume that the surveys would not exceed this length.
    Based on our consultation with experts and previous experience 
conducting surveys of teachers through evaluations of Department 
programs or policies, we estimate that it would cost the average State 
approximately $25,000 to develop the survey instruments, including 
instructions for the survey recipients, for a total cost to the 50 
States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 
of $1,300,000. However, we recognize that the cost would be lower for 
States that identify an existing instrument that could be adapted or 
used for this purpose.\75\ If States surveyed all individuals who 
completed teacher preparation programs in the previous year, we 
estimate that they would survey 203,701 teachers, based on the reported 
number of individuals completing teacher preparation programs, both 
traditional and alternative route programs, during the 2011-2012 
academic year.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \75\ The experts with whom we consulted did not provide 
estimates of the number of hours involved in the development of this 
type of survey. For the estimated burden hours for the Paperwork 
Reduction Act section, this figure represents 612 hours at an 
average hourly wage rate of $40.83, based on the hourly wage for 
faculty at a public IHE and statisticians employed by State or local 
governments.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To estimate the cost of administering these surveys, we consulted 
researchers with experience conducting a survey of all recent graduates 
of teacher preparation programs in New York City.\76\ In order to meet 
the target of a 70 percent response rate for that survey, the 
researchers estimated that their cost per respondent was $100, which 
included an incentive for respondents worth $25. We believe that it is 
unlikely that States will provide cash incentives for respondents to 
the survey, thus providing an estimate of $75 per respondent. However, 
since the time of data collection in that survey, there have been 
dramatic advances in the availability and usefulness of online survey 
software with a corresponding decrease in cost. As such, we believe 
that the $75 per respondent estimate may actually provide an extreme 
upper bound and may dramatically over-estimate the costs associated 
with administering any such survey. For example, several prominent 
online survey companies offer survey hosting services for as little as 
$300 per year for unlimited questions and unlimited respondents. Using 
that total cost, and assuming surveys administered and hosted by the 
State and using the number of program graduates in 2013, the cost per 
respondent would range from $0.02 to $21.43, with an average cost per 
State of $0.97. We recognize that this would represent an extreme lower 
bound and many States are unlikely to see costs per respondent that low 
until the survey is fully integrated into existing systems. For 
example, States may be able to provide teachers with a mechanism, such 
as an online portal, to both verify their class rosters and complete 
the survey. Because teachers would be motivated to ensure that they 
were not evaluated based on the performance of students they did not 
teach, requiring new teachers to complete the survey in order to access 
their class rosters would increase the response rate for the survey and 
allow new teachers to select their teacher preparation program from a 
pull-down menu, reducing the amount of time required to link the survey 
results to particular programs. States could also have teacher 
preparation programs disseminate the new teacher survey with other 
information for teacher preparation program alumni or have LEAs 
disseminate the new teacher survey during induction or professional 
development activities. We believe that, as States incorporate these 
surveys into other structures, data collection costs will dramatically 
decline towards the lower bounds noted above.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \76\ These cost estimates were based primarily on our 
consultation with a researcher involved in the development, 
implementation, and analysis of surveys of teacher preparation 
program graduates and graduates of alternative certification 
programs in New York City in 2004 as part of the Teacher Pathways 
Project. These survey instruments are available online at: 
www.teacherpolicyresearch.org/TeacherPathwaysProject/Surveys/tabid/115/Default.aspx.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The California State School Climate Survey (CSCS) is one portion of 
the larger California School Climate, Health, & Learning Survey, 
designed to survey teachers and staff to address questions of school 
climate. While the CSCS is subsidized by the State of California, it is 
also offered to school districts outside of the State for a fee, 
ranging from $500 to $1,500 per district, depending on its enrollment 
size. Applying this cost structure to all school districts nationwide 
with enrollment (as outlined in the Department's Common Core of Data), 
costs would range from a low of $0.05 per FTE teacher to $500 per FTE 
teacher with an average of $21.29 per FTE. However, these costs are 
inflated by single-school, single-teacher districts, which are largely 
either charter schools or small, rural school districts unlikely to 
administer separate surveys. When removing single-school, single-
teacher districts, the average cost per respondent decreases to $12.27.
    Given the cost savings associated with online administration of 
surveys and the likelihood that States will fold these surveys into 
existing structures, we believe that many of these costs are likely 
over-estimates of the actual costs that States will bear in 
administering these surveys. However, for purposes of estimating costs 
in this context, we use a rate of $30.33 per respondent, which 
represents a cost per respondent at the 85th percentile of the CSCS 
administration and well above the maximum administration cost for

[[Page 71865]]

popular consumer survey software. Using this estimate, we estimate 
that, if States surveyed a combined sample of 203,701 teachers and an 
equivalent number of employers, the cumulative cost to the 50 States, 
the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico of 
administering the survey of $8,649,540.
    If States surveyed all teacher preparation program graduates and 
their employers, assuming that both the teacher and employer surveys 
would take no more than 30 minutes to complete, that the employers are 
likely to be principals or district administrators, and a response rate 
of 70 percent of teachers and employers surveyed, the total estimated 
burden for 203,701 teachers and their 203,701 employers of completing 
the surveys would be $2,918,120 and $3,594,720 respectively, based on 
the national average hourly wage of $40.93 and $50.42 for elementary 
and secondary public school teachers and elementary and secondary 
school level administrators. These costs would vary depending on the 
extent to which a State determines that it can measure these outcomes 
based on a sample of new teachers and their employers. This may depend 
on the distribution of new teachers prepared by teacher preparation 
programs throughout the LEAs and schools within each State and also on 
whether or not some of this information is available from existing 
sources such as surveys of recent graduates conducted by teacher 
preparation programs as part of their accreditation process.

Assurance of Accreditation

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(4) States would be required to assure 
that each teacher preparation program in the State either: (a) Is 
accredited by a specialized accrediting agency recognized by the 
Secretary for accreditation of professional teacher education programs 
or (b) provides teacher candidates with content and pedagogical 
knowledge and quality clinical preparation, and has rigorous teacher 
candidate entry and exit standards. As discussed in greater detail in 
the Paperwork Reduction Act section of this notice, we estimate that 
the total cost to the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the 
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico of providing these assurances for the 
estimated 13,404 teacher preparation programs nationwide for which 
States have already determined are accredited based on previous title 
II reporting submissions would be $676,100, assuming that 2 hours were 
required per teacher preparation program and using an estimated hourly 
wage of $25.22.

Annual Reporting Requirements Related to State Report Card

    As discussed in greater detail in the Paperwork Reduction Act 
section of this notice, proposed Sec.  612.4 includes several 
requirements for which States must annually report on the SRC. Using an 
estimated hourly wage of $25.22, we estimate that the total cost for 
the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto 
Rico to report the following required information in the SRC would be: 
Classifications of teacher preparation programs ($315,250, based on 0.5 
hours per 25,000 programs); assurances of accreditation ($84,510, based 
on 0.25 hours per 13,404 programs); State's weighting of the different 
indicators in Sec.  612.5 ($330 annually, based on 0.25 hours per 
State); State-level rewards and consequences associated with the 
designated performance levels ($660 in the first year and $130 
thereafter, based on 0.5 hours per State in the first year and 0.1 
hours per State in subsequent years); method of program aggregation 
($130 annually, based on 0.1 hours per State); process for challenging 
data and program classification ($3,930 in the first year and $1,510 
thereafter, based on 3 hours per State in the first year and 6 hours 
for 10 States in subsequent years); examination of data collection 
quality ($6,950, based on 5.3 hours per State annually), recordkeeping 
and publishing related to appeal decisions ($6,950 annually, based on 
5.3 hours per State). The sum of these annual reporting costs would be 
$420,220 for the first year and $419,690 in subsequent years, based on 
a cumulative burden hours of 16,662 hours in the first year and 16,642 
hours in subsequent years.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5, States would also incur burden to enter 
the required aggregated information on student learning, employment, 
and survey outcomes into the information collection instrument for each 
teacher preparation program. Using the estimated hourly wage rate of 
$25.22, we estimate the following cumulative costs to the 50 States, 
the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico to report on 25,000 teacher 
preparation programs: Annual reporting on student learning outcomes 
($1,576,250 annually, based on 2.5 hours per program); and annual 
reporting of employment outcomes ($2,206,750 annually, based on 3.5 
hours per program); and annual reporting of survey outcomes ($630,500 
annually, based on 1 hour per program). Our estimate of the total 
annual cost of reporting these outcome measures on the SRC related to 
proposed Sec.  612.5 is $4,413,500, based on 175,000 hours.

Potential Benefits

    The principal benefits related to the evaluation and classification 
of teacher preparation programs under the proposed regulations are 
those resulting from the reporting and public availability of 
information on the effectiveness of teachers prepared by teacher 
preparation programs within each State. The Department believes that 
the information collected and reported as a result of these 
requirements will improve the accountability of teacher preparation 
programs, both traditional and alternative route to certification 
programs, for preparing teachers who are equipped to succeed in 
classroom settings and help their students reach their full potential.
    Research studies have found significant and substantial variation 
in teaching effectiveness among individual teachers and some variation 
has also been found among graduates of different teacher preparation 
programs.\77\ In Tennessee, some programs produced graduates who were 
two to three times more likely to be in the top quintile based on 
increases in student growth, while other programs produced graduates 
who were two to three times more likely to be in the bottom 
quintile.\78\ Because this variation in the effectiveness of graduates 
is not associated with any particular type of preparation program, the 
only way to determine which programs are producing more effective 
teachers is to link information on the performance of teachers in the 
classroom back to their teacher preparation programs.\79\ The proposed 
regulations do this by requiring States to link data on student 
learning outcomes, employment outcomes, and teacher and employer survey 
outcomes back to the teacher preparation programs, rating each program 
based on these data, and then making that information available to the 
public.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \77\ Donald J. Boyd, et al., ``Teacher Preparation and Student 
Achievement.'' Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis 31, No. 4 
(2009): 416-440.
    \78\ Tennessee Higher Education Commission, ``Report Card on the 
Effectiveness of Teacher Training Programs,'' Nashville, TN (2010).
    \79\ Thomas J. Kane, Jonah E. Rockoff, and Douglas O. Staiger, 
``What Does Certification Tell Us About Teacher Effectiveness? 
Evidence from New York City.'' Economics of Education Review 27, no. 
6 (2008): 615-31.; Boyd, et al., 2009.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Department recognizes that simply requiring States to assess 
the performance of teacher preparation programs and report this 
information to

[[Page 71866]]

the public will not produce increases in student achievement, but it is 
an important part of a larger set of policies and investments designed 
to attract talented individuals to the teaching profession; prepare 
them for success in the classroom; and support, reward, and retain 
effective teachers. In addition, the Department believes that, once 
information on the performance of teacher preparation programs is more 
readily available, a variety of stakeholders will become better 
consumers of these data, which will ultimately lead to improved student 
achievement by influencing the behavior of States seeking to provide 
technical assistance to low-performing programs, IHEs engaging in 
considered self-improvement efforts, prospective teachers seeking to 
train at the highest quality teacher preparation programs, and 
employers seeking to hire the most highly qualified new teachers.
    Louisiana has already adopted some of the proposed requirements and 
has begun to see improvements in teacher preparation programs. Based on 
data suggesting that the English Language Arts teachers prepared by the 
University of Louisiana at Lafayette were producing teachers who were 
less effective than other new teachers prepared by other programs, 
Louisiana identified the program in 2008 as being in need of 
improvement and provided additional analyses of the qualifications of 
the program's graduates and of the specific areas where the students 
taught by program graduates appeared to be struggling.\80\ When data 
suggested that students struggled with essay questions, faculty from 
the elementary education program and the liberal arts department in the 
university collaborated to restructure the teacher education curriculum 
to include more writing instruction. Based on 2010-11 data, student 
learning outcomes for teachers prepared by this program are now 
comparable to other novice teachers in the State, and the program is no 
longer identified for improvement.\81\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \80\ Stephen Sawchuk, `` `Value Added' Concept Proves Beneficial 
to Teacher Colleges,'' Education Week 31, no. 21, Published online 
on February 17, 2012. http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2012/02/17/21louisiana_ep.h31.html?qs=lafayette.
    \81\ Kristin A. Gansle, Jeanne M. Burns, and George Noell, 
``Value Added Assessment of Teacher Preparation Programs in 
Louisiana: 2007-2008 to 2009-10: Overview of 2010-11 Results.'' 
Research summary, Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana Board of Regents 
(2011).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This is one example, but it suggests that States can use data on 
student learning outcomes for graduates of teacher preparation programs 
to help these programs identify weaknesses and implement needed reforms 
in a reasonable amount of time. As more information becomes available 
and if the data indicate that some programs produce more effective 
teachers, LEAs seeking to hire new teachers will prefer to hire 
teachers from those programs. All things being equal, aspiring teachers 
will elect to pursue their degrees or certificates at teacher 
preparation programs with strong student learning outcomes and 
placement rates.

TEACH Grants

    The proposed regulations link program eligibility for participation 
in the TEACH Grant program to the State assessment of program quality 
under part 612. Under proposed Sec. Sec.  686.11(a)(iii) and 686.2(d), 
to be eligible to receive a TEACH Grant for a program, an individual 
must be enrolled in a high-quality teacher preparation program; that is 
a program that is classified by the State as effective or higher in 
either or both the April 2019 and/or April 2020 State Report Card for 
the 2020-2021 title IV HEA award year or, classified by the State as 
effective or higher in two out of the previous three years, beginning 
with the April 2019 State Report Card, for the 2021-2022 title IV HEA 
award year, under 34 CFR 612.4(b) or meets the ``high-quality'' 
standards for a STEM program. For a STEM program to meet the definition 
of ``high-quality teacher preparation program,'' it must be at a TEACH 
Grant-eligible STEM program at a TEACH Grant-eligible institution. To 
be a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program, the Secretary must not have 
identified that, over the most recent three years for which data are 
available, fewer than sixty percent of the program's TEACH Grant 
recipients have taught full-time as a highly-qualified teacher in a 
high-need field in a low-income school in accordance with Sec.  686.40 
for at least one year within three years of completing the STEM 
program.
    In addition to the referenced benefits of improved accountability 
under the title II reporting system, the Department believes that the 
proposed regulations relating to TEACH Grants will also contribute to 
the improvement of teacher preparation programs. Linking program 
eligibility for TEACH Grants to the performance assessment by the 
States under the title II reporting system provides an additional 
factor for prospective students to consider when choosing a program and 
an incentive for programs to achieve a rating of effective or higher.
    In order to analyze the possible effects of the proposed 
regulations on the number of programs eligible to participate in the 
TEACH Grant program and the amount of TEACH Grants disbursed, the 
Department analyzed data from a variety of sources. This analysis 
focused on teacher preparation programs at IHEs. This is because, under 
the HEA, alternative route programs offered independently of an IHE are 
not eligible to participate in the TEACH Grant program. For the purpose 
of analyzing the effect of the proposed regulations on TEACH Grants, 
the Department estimated the number of teacher preparation programs 
based on data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System 
(IPEDS) about program graduates in education-related majors as defined 
by the Category of Instructional Program (CIP) codes and award levels. 
For the purposes of this analysis, ``teacher preparation programs'' 
refers to programs in the relevant CIP codes that also have the IPEDS 
indicator flag for being a State-approved teacher education program.
    In order to estimate how many programs might be affected by a loss 
of TEACH Grant eligibility, the Department had to estimate how many 
programs will be individually evaluated under the proposed regulations, 
which encourage States to report on the performance of individual 
programs offered by IHEs rather than on the aggregated performance of 
programs at the institutional level as currently required. The 
estimated range of individual programs reflects the variety of 
thresholds that States may use in defining programs for evaluation. 
Under the proposed regulations, the States would be able to determine 
the level of aggregation at which to analyze programs at each IHE. One 
factor that States may consider in determining the level of aggregation 
for reporting on programs is the number of new teachers. All programs 
with 25 or more new teachers in a given reporting year (program size 
threshold) would be required to be reported on a stand-alone basis, 
with States having the discretion to set a lower threshold (lower 
program size threshold). For programs below the program size threshold 
of 25 (or lower, at a State's discretion) in a given reporting year, 
the proposed regulations require aggregation across years or subject 
areas, so that all programs that meet the chosen program size threshold 
as reported by a State can be evaluated.
    States may refrain from including a program in the SRC if 
aggregation across years, across programs at the same IHE, or a 
combination of the two does not result in enough new teachers to meet 
the program size threshold in a given year, or if doing so would be 
inconsistent with State and Federal privacy and confidentiality laws 
and

[[Page 71867]]

regulations. While encouraged to define programs below the 
institutional level to improve the utility of the information, 
especially if the number of new teachers in each specialization 
supports it, the States could aggregate all programs, as appropriate 
and consistent with Sec.  612.4(b)(4), except those that meet the 
program size threshold and report them together. If all States took the 
approach of reporting at the institutional level when allowed by the 
program size threshold (Approach 1), the Department estimates that 
there would be approximately 7,123 programs. This is based on applying 
the proposed 25 new teachers-in-one-year threshold to programs at the 
six-digit CIP code and award level to IPEDS data, which results in 
5,823 programs that meet the threshold and another 1,300 cases that 
would be reported at the institutional level (236 IHEs with no programs 
over 25 new teachers and 1,064 IHEs with some programs above the 
threshold and others below it). Of these 7,123 programs, approximately 
4,723 programs or 66 percent are at IHEs that have disbursed TEACH 
Grants between academic year (AY) 2008-09 to AY 2010-11.
    Alternatively, the States could elect to report programs under a 
disaggregated approach that defines programs by the six-digit CIP code, 
award level, and no minimum number of graduates that results in an 
estimated 24,497 programs (Approach 2). This estimate may be reduced in 
any given year because States are not required to report on programs if 
doing so would be inconsistent with Federal or State privacy and 
confidentiality laws and regulations, and the number of programs 
affected by this provision will vary year to year. Of the 24,497 total 
estimated programs, approximately 16,721 are at IHEs that have 
participated in the TEACH Grant program and might be subject to a loss 
of funds if designated as low-performing or at-risk by the State in 
which they are located.
    Table 1 summarizes these two possible approaches to program 
definition that represent the opposite ends of the range of options 
available to the States. Based on IPEDS data, approximately 30 percent 
of programs defined at the six digit CIP code level have at least 25 
new teachers when aggregated across three years, so States may add one 
additional year to the analysis or aggregate programs with similar 
features to push more programs over the threshold, pursuant to the 
regulations. The actual number of programs at IHEs reported on will 
likely fall between these two points represented by Approach 1 and 
Approach 2. In addition, as discussed earlier in this preamble, States 
will have to report on alternative certification teacher preparation 
programs that are not housed at IHEs, but they are not relevant for 
analysis of the effects on TEACH Grants because they are ineligible 
under the HEA and are not included in Table 1. The Department welcomes 
comments related to the estimate of the number of programs and will 
consider them in drafting the final regulations.

                      Table 1--Teacher Preparation Programs at IHEs and TEACH Grant Program
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                            Approach 1                      Approach 2
                                                 ---------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                    TEACH grant                     TEACH grant
                                                       Total       participating       Total       participating
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Public Total....................................           2,522           1,795          11,931           8,414
    4-year......................................           2,365           1,786          11,353           8,380
    2-year or less..............................             157               9             578              34
Private Not-for-Profit Total....................           1,879           1,212          12,316           8,175
    4-year......................................           1,878           1,212          12,313           8,175
    2-year or less..............................               1  ..............               3  ..............
Private For-Profit Total........................              67              39             250             132
    4-year......................................              59              39             238             132
    2-year or less..............................               8  ..............              12  ..............
                                                 ---------------------------------------------------------------
        Total...................................           4,468           3,046          24,497          16,721
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Given the number of programs and their TEACH Grant participation 
status as described in Table 1, the Department examined IPEDS data and 
the Department's budget estimates for 2015 related to TEACH Grants to 
estimate the effect of the proposed regulations on TEACH Grants 
beginning with the FY2018 cohort when the regulations would be in 
effect. Based on prior reporting, only 37 IHEs (representing an 
estimated 129 programs) were identified as having a low-performing or 
at-risk program in 2010 and twenty-seven States have not identified any 
low-performing programs in twelve years. Given prior identification of 
such programs and the fact that the States would continue to control 
the classification of teacher preparation programs subject to analysis, 
the Department does not expect a large percentage of programs to be 
subject to a loss of eligibility for TEACH Grants. Therefore, the 
Department evaluated the effects on the amount of TEACH Grants 
disbursed and recipients on the basis of the States classifying a range 
of three percent, five percent, or eight percent of programs to be low-
performing or at-risk. These results are summarized in Table 2. 
Ultimately, the number of programs affected is subject to the program 
definition, rating criteria, and program classifications adopted by the 
individual States, so the distribution of those effects is not known 
with certainty. However, the maximum effect, whatever the distribution, 
is limited by the amount of TEACH Grants made and the percentage of 
programs classified as low-performing and at-risk that participate in 
the TEACH Grant program. The Department invites comments about the 
expected percentage of programs that will be found to be low-performing 
and at-risk and will take any comments or data received into 
consideration when analyzing the effects of the final regulations.

[[Page 71868]]



    Table 2--Estimated Effect in 2018 on Programs and TEACH Grant Amounts of Different Rates of Ineligibility
                               [Percentage of low-performing or at-risk programs]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                        3%              5%              8%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Programs:
    Approach 1..................................................             134             223             357
    Approach 2..................................................             735           1,225           1,960
TEACH Grant Recipients..........................................           1,051           1,751           2,802
TEACH Grant Amount at Low-Performing or At-Risk programs........      $3,032,769      $5,054,614      $8,087,383
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The estimated effects presented in Table 2 reflect assumptions 
about the likelihood of a program being ineligible and do not take into 
account the size of the program or participation in the TEACH Grant 
program. The Department had no program level performance information 
and treats the programs as equally likely to become ineligible for 
TEACH Grants. If in fact factors such as size or TEACH Grant 
participation were associated with high or low performance, the number 
of TEACH Grant recipients and TEACH Grant volume could deviate from 
these estimates.
    Finally, approximately 10 percent of TEACH Grant recipients are not 
enrolled in teacher preparation programs, but are majoring in such 
subjects as STEM, foreign languages, and history. The proposed 
regulations allow STEM programs at TEACH Grant-eligible institutions to 
participate in the TEACH Grant program provided that, over the most 
recent three years for which data are available, the Secretary has not 
identified that fewer than 60 percent of the STEM program's TEACH Grant 
recipients complete at least one year of teaching that fulfills the 
service obligation under Sec.  686.40 within three years of completing 
their STEM program. Continuing eligibility for STEM programs supports 
the Department's efforts to expand the pool of teachers in these 
crucial subjects and reflects research on the value of STEM subject 
matter expertise for STEM teachers.\82\ The requirement that programs 
have 60 percent of their TEACH Grant recipients complete at least one 
year of teaching that fulfills the service obligation under Sec.  
686.40 should direct TEACH Grant funds to programs at IHEs that 
identify teacher candidates that follow up on their intention to teach. 
The Secretary believes that sixty percent is the appropriate percentage 
because it seems that TEACH grant recipients in the STEM fields should 
enter the teaching profession at the same rates as education majors and 
sixty percent of education majors teach within ten years of receiving 
their bachelor's degree. We acknowledge that the overall rate of 
teaching is not the same as teaching in a high-need field in a low-
income school, as is required under TEACH, but we think the rate is 
nonetheless reasonable because TEACH is designed to support future 
teachers, students who receive TEACH Grants commit to fulfilling their 
service obligations, and because TEACH recipients are high-achieving 
students who attend high-quality programs.\83\ We have chosen a three-
year window in order to allow students time to complete their content 
training and to enter into and complete a teacher preparation program. 
For example, we expect that some of these students would need to enroll 
in and complete a Master's degree to earn a teaching license. A three-
year window would allow these students time to complete a Master's 
degree and then begin fulfilling their TEACH Grant service obligations. 
The Secretary requests comments about this framework and particularly 
on whether such a framework is necessary to encourage STEM teachers who 
are receiving TEACH Grants to enter the teaching profession and teach 
in high-need schools. The Secretary also requests comments on the 
three-year window and on whether the sixty percent placement rate is a 
reasonable and realistic placement rate, or whether another rate, or no 
placement rate, would be more reasonable or could be supported with 
research, data, or other analysis.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \82\ Robert Floden and Marco Meniketti, ``Research on the 
Effects of Coursework in the Arts and Sciences and in the 
Foundations of Education,'' Studying Teacher Education: The Report 
of the AERA Panel on Research and Teacher Education, Mahwah, NJ 
(2006): 261-308.
    \83\ See, U.S. Department of Education, National Center for 
Education Statistics, Teacher Career Choices: Timing of Teacher 
Careers Among 1992-93 Bachelor's Degree Recipients, Postsecondary 
Education Descriptive Analysis Report. Washington, DC: U.S. 
Department of Education (2008).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Whatever the amount of TEACH Grant volume at programs found to be 
ineligible, the effect on IHEs will be reduced from the full amounts 
represented by the estimated effects presented here as students could 
elect to enroll in other programs at the same IHE that retain 
eligibility because they are classified by the State as effective or 
higher. Another factor that would reduce the effect of the regulations 
on programs and students is that an otherwise eligible student who 
received a TEACH Grant for enrollment in a TEACH Grant-eligible program 
or TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program is eligible to receive additional 
TEACH Grants to complete the program, even if that program becomes no 
longer considered a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program.
    For the broader set of IHEs, we would expect that over time a large 
portion of the TEACH Grant volume now disbursed to students at programs 
that will be categorized as low-performing or at-risk will be shifted 
to programs that remain eligible. The extent to which this happens will 
depend on other factors affecting the students' enrollment decisions 
such as in-State status, proximity to home or future employment 
locations, and the availability of programs of interest, but the 
Department believes that students will take into account a program's 
rating and the availability of TEACH Grants when looking for a teacher 
preparation program. As discussed in the Net Budget Impacts section of 
this notice, the Department expects that the reduction in TEACH Grant 
volume will taper off as States identify low-performing and at-risk 
programs and those programs are improved or are no longer eligible for 
TEACH Grants. Because existing recipients as of the effective date will 
continue to have access to TEACH Grants, and incoming students will 
have notice and be able to consider the program's eligibility for TEACH 
Grants in making an enrollment decision, the reduction in TEACH Grant 
volume that is classified as a transfer from students at ineligible 
programs to the Federal Government will be significantly reduced from 
the estimated range of $3.0 million to $8.3 million in

[[Page 71869]]

Table 2 for the initial years the regulations are in effect. While we 
have no past experience with students' reaction to a designation of a 
program as low-performing and loss of TEACH Grant eligibility, we 
assume that, to the extent it is possible, students would choose to 
attend a program rated effective or higher. For IHEs, the effect of the 
loss of TEACH Grant funds will depend on the student reaction and how 
many chose to enroll in an eligible program at the same IHE, choose to 
attend a different IHE, or make up for the loss of TEACH Grants by 
funding their program from other sources.
    In addition to the potential reduction in funds from the loss of 
TEACH Grant eligibility or the loss of title IV eligibility for 
programs that lose State approval or financial support, IHEs with 
teacher preparation programs may incur some reporting costs related to 
the TEACH Grant and title IV provisions in the proposed regulations. An 
IHE would have to confirm that its TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs 
fall within the CIP codes on a list provided by the Department. We 
estimate that 1,000 IHEs with TEACH Grant-eligible STEM programs would 
take 3 hours at a wage rate of $25.22 to complete this task for a total 
cost of $75,660. Additionally, while the Department does not anticipate 
that many programs will lose State approval or financial support, if 
this does occur, IHEs with such programs would have to notify enrolled 
and accepted students immediately, notify the Department within 30 
days, and disclose such information on its Web site or promotional 
materials. The Department estimates that 50 IHEs would offer programs 
that lose State approval or financial support and would take 5.75 hours 
to make the necessary notifications and disclosures at a wage rate of 
$25.22 for a total cost of $7,250. Finally, some of the programs that 
lose State approval or financial support may apply to regain 
eligibility for title IV, HEA funds upon improved performance and 
restoration of State approval or financial support. The Department 
estimates that 10 IHEs with such programs would apply for restored 
eligibility and the process would require 20 hours at a wage rate of 
$25.22 for a total cost of $5,040.
    The Secretary welcomes comments about the data and estimates 
presented here and will consider them in evaluating the final 
regulations.

V. Net Budget Impacts

    The proposed regulations related to the implementation of the TEACH 
Grant program are estimated to have a net budget impact of $0.67 
million in cost reduction over the 2014 to 2024 loan cohorts. These 
estimates were developed using the Office of Management and Budget's 
(OMB) Credit Subsidy Calculator. The OMB calculator takes projected 
future cash flows from the Department's student loan cost estimation 
model and produces discounted subsidy rates reflecting the net present 
value of all future Federal costs associated with awards made in a 
given fiscal year. Values are calculated using a ``basket of zeros'' 
methodology under which each cash flow is discounted using the interest 
rate of a zero-coupon Treasury bond with the same maturity as that cash 
flow. To ensure comparability across programs, this methodology is 
incorporated into the calculator and used Government-wide to develop 
estimates of the Federal cost of credit programs. Accordingly, the 
Department believes it is the appropriate methodology to use in 
developing estimates for these proposed regulations. That said, in 
developing the following Accounting Statement, the Department consulted 
with OMB on how to integrate our discounting methodology with the 
discounting methodology traditionally used in developing regulatory 
impact analyses.
    Absent evidence of the impact of these proposed regulations on 
student behavior, budget cost estimates were based on behavior as 
reflected in various Department data sets and longitudinal surveys. 
Program cost estimates were generated by running projected cash flows 
related to the provision through the Department's student loan cost 
estimation model. TEACH Grant cost estimates are developed across risk 
categories: Freshmen/sophomores at 4-year IHEs, juniors/seniors at 4-
year IHEs, and graduate students. Risk categories have separate 
assumptions based on the historical pattern of behavior of borrowers in 
each category--for example, the likelihood of default or the likelihood 
to use statutory deferment or discharge benefits.
    As discussed in the Analysis of the Effect of the Proposed 
Regulations on TEACH Grants section of this notice, the proposed 
regulations could result in a reduction in TEACH Grant volume. Under 
the effective dates and data collection schedule in the proposed 
regulations, that reduction in volume would start with the 2020 TEACH 
Grant cohort. The Department assumes that the effect of the proposed 
regulations would be greatest in the first years they were in effect as 
the low-performing and at-risk programs are identified, removed from 
TEACH Grant eligibility, and helped to improve or replaced by better 
performing programs. Therefore, the percent of volume estimated to be 
at programs in the low-performing or at-risk categories is assumed to 
drop for future cohorts. As shown in Table 3, the net budget impact 
over the 2014-2024 TEACH Grant cohorts is approximately $0.67 million 
in reduced costs.

                            Table 3--Estimated Budget Impact of Proposed Regulations
                              [PB 2015 TEACH grant volume and recipient estimates]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                       2020            2021            2022            2023            2024
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
PB 2015 TEACH Grant:
    Recipients..................          36,429          36,910          37,396          37,890          38,391
    Amount......................     105,149,650     106,537,976     107,944,631     109,369,859     110,813,906
Low Performing and At Risk:
    %...........................           5.00%           3.00%           1.50%           1.00%           0.75%
    Recipients..................           1,821           1,107             561             379             288
    Amount......................       5,257,483       3,196,139       1,619,169       1,093,699         831,104
Redistributed TEACH Grants:
    %...........................             75%             75%             75%             75%             75%
    Amount......................       3,943,112       2,397,104       1,214,377         820,274         623,328
Reduced TEACH Grant Volume:
    %...........................             25%             25%             25%             25%             25%
                                         262,874         199,759         134,931         136,712          69,259
Estimated Budget Impact of
 Policy:
    Subsidy Rate................          21.99%          22.44%          23.08%          23.08%          23.11%

[[Page 71870]]

 
    Baseline Volume.............     105,149,650     106,537,976     107,944,631     109,369,859     110,813,906
    Revised Volume..............     103,835,279     105,738,941     107,539,839     109,096,434     110,606,130
    Baseline Cost...............      23,122,408      23,907,122      24,913,621      25,242,563      25,609,094
    Revised Cost................      22,833,378      23,727,818      24,820,195      25,179,457      25,561,077
    Estimated Cost Reduction....         289,030         179,303          93,426          63,106          48,017
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The estimated budget impact presented in Table 3 is defined against 
the PB 2015 baseline costs for the TEACH Grant program, and the actual 
volume of TEACH Grants in 2020 and beyond will vary. The budget impact 
estimate depends on the assumptions about the percent of TEACH Grant 
volume at programs that become ineligible and the share of that volume 
that is redistributed or reduced as shown in Table 3. Finally, absent 
evidence of different rates of loan conversion at programs that will be 
eligible or ineligible for TEACH Grants when the proposed regulations 
are in place, the Department did not assume a different loan conversion 
rate as TEACH Grants shifted to programs rated effective or higher. 
However, given that placement and retention rates are one element of 
the program evaluation system, the Department does hope that, as 
students shift to programs rated effective or better, more TEACH Grant 
recipients will fulfill their service obligation. If this is the case 
and their TEACH Grants do not convert to loans, the students who do not 
have to repay the converted loans will benefit and the expected cost 
reductions for the Federal government may be reduced or reversed 
because more of the TEACH Grants will remain grants and no payment will 
be made to the Federal government for these grants.
    In addition to the TEACH Grant provision, the proposed regulations 
include a provision that would make a program ineligible for title IV, 
HEA funds if the program was found to be low-performing and subject to 
the withdrawal of the State's approval or termination of the State's 
financial support. The Department assumes this will happen rarely and 
that the title IV funds involved would be shifted to other programs. 
Therefore, there is no budget impact associated with this provision.
    The Department welcomes comments on the assumptions and estimates 
presented in this section and will consider any received in developing 
the final regulations.

VI. Accounting Statement

    As required by OMB Circular A-4 (available at www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/assets/omb/circulars/a004/a-4.pdf), in the 
following table we have prepared an accounting statement showing the 
classification of the expenditures associated with the provisions of 
these proposed regulations. This table provides our best estimate of 
the changes in annual monetized costs, benefits, and transfers as a 
result of the proposed regulations.

      Accounting Statement Classification of Estimated Expenditures
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Category                             Benefits
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Better and more publicly available
 information on the effectiveness of
 teacher preparation programs...........          Not Quantified
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Distribution of TEACH Grants to better
 performing programs....................          Not Quantified
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Category                               Costs
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                7%              3%
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Institutional Report Card (set-up,            $3,557,591      $3,554,635
 annual reporting, posting on Web site).
State Report Card (Statutory                  $1,582,038      $1,569,326
 requirements: Annual reporting, posting
 on Web site; Regulatory requirements:
 Meaningful differentiation, consulting
 with stakeholders, aggregation of small
 programs, assurance of accreditation,
 other annual reporting costs)..........
Reporting Student Learning Outcomes          $18,718,081     $18,650,716
 (develop model to link aggregate data
 on student achievement to teacher
 preparation programs, modifications to
 student growth models for non-tested
 grades and subjects, and measuring
 student growth)........................
Reporting Employment Outcomes (placement      $2,289,940      $2,289,940
 and retention data collection directly
 from IHEs or LEAs).....................
Reporting Survey Results (developing         $15,965,862     $15,940,841
 survey instruments, annual
 administration, and response costs)....
Identifying TEACH Grant-eligible STEM            $77,882         $79,339
 Programs...............................
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Category                             Transfers
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Reduced costs to the Federal government         -$83,344        -$74,161
 from TEACH Grants to prospective
 students at teacher preparation
 programs found ineligible..............
------------------------------------------------------------------------

VII. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

    These proposed regulations will affect IHEs that participate in the 
title IV, HEA programs, including TEACH Grants, alternative 
certification programs not housed at IHEs, States, and individual 
borrowers. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Size Standards 
define for-profit IHEs as ``small businesses'' if they are 
independently owned and operated and not dominant in their field of 
operation with total annual revenue below $7,000,000. The SBA Size 
Standards define nonprofit IHEs as small organizations if they are 
independently owned and operated and

[[Page 71871]]

not dominant in their field of operation, or as small entities if they 
are IHEs controlled by governmental entities with populations below 
50,000. The revenues involved in the sector affected by these proposed 
regulations, and the concentration of ownership of IHEs by private 
owners or public systems means that the number of title IV, HEA 
eligible IHEs that are small entities would be limited but for the fact 
that the nonprofit entities fit within the definition of a small 
organization regardless of revenue. The potential for some of the 
programs offered by entities subject to the proposed regulations to 
lose eligibility to participate in the title IV, HEA programs led to 
the preparation of this Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis.

Description of the Reasons That Action by the Agency Is Being 
Considered

    The Department has a strong interest in encouraging the development 
of highly trained teachers and ensuring that today's children have a 
high quality and effective teachers in the classroom, and it seeks to 
help achieve this goal by promulgating these proposed regulations. 
Teacher preparation programs have operated without access to meaningful 
data that could inform them of the effectiveness of their teachers that 
graduate and go on to work in the classroom setting.
    The Department wants to establish a teacher preparation feedback 
mechanism premised upon teacher effectiveness. Under the proposed 
regulations, an accountability system would be established that would 
identify programs by quality so that high-performing teacher 
preparation programs could be recognized and rewarded and low-
performing programs could be supported and improved. Data collected 
under the new system would help all teacher preparation programs make 
necessary corrections and continuously improve, while facilitating 
States' efforts to reshape and reform low-performing and at-risk 
programs.

Succinct Statement of the Objectives of, and Legal Basis for, the 
Regulations

    We are proposing these regulations to better implement the teacher 
preparation program accountability and reporting system under title II 
of the HEA and to revise regulations to implement the TEACH grant 
program. Our key objective is to revise Federal reporting requirements 
to reduce institutional burden, as appropriate, and have State 
reporting focus on the most important measures of teacher preparation 
program quality while tying TEACH Grant eligibility to assessments of 
program performance under the title II accountability system. The legal 
basis for these proposed regulations is 20 U.S.C. 1022d, 1022f, and 
1070g, et seq.

Description of and, Where Feasible, an Estimate of the Number of Small 
Entities to Which the Regulations Will Apply

    The proposed regulations related to title II reporting affect a 
larger number of entities, including small entities, than the smaller 
number subject to the possible loss of TEACH Grant eligibility or title 
IV, HEA program eligibility. The Department has more data on teacher 
preparation programs housed at IHEs than on those independent of IHEs. 
Whether evaluated at the aggregated institutional level or the 
disaggregated program level, State approved teacher preparation 
programs are concentrated in the public and private not-for-profit 
sectors. For the provisions related to the TEACH Grant program and 
using the institutional approach with a threshold of 25 new teachers 
(or a lower threshold at the discretion of the State), since the IHEs 
will be reporting for all their programs, we estimate that 
approximately 56.4 percent of teacher preparation programs are at 
public IHEs--the vast majority of which would not be small entities, 
and 42.1 percent are at private not-for-profit IHEs. The remaining 1.5 
percent are at private for-profit IHEs and of those with teacher 
preparation programs, approximately 11 percent had reported FY 2012 
total revenues under $7 million in IPEDS data. Based on IPEDS data, 
approximately 65 IHEs offering teacher preparation programs, seven of 
which participated in the TEACH Grant program in the past three years, 
are small entities as shown in Table 4.

                             Table 4--Teacher Preparation Programs at Small Entities
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                    Programs at
                                                       Total        Programs at                     TEACH grant
                                                     programs     small entities    % of Total     participating
                                                                                                  small entities
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Public
    Approach 1..................................           2,522              17               1              14
    Approach 2..................................          11,931              36               0              34
Private Not-for-Profit
    Approach 1..................................           1,879           1,879             100           1,212
    Approach 2..................................          12,316          12,316             100           8,175
Private For-Profit
    Approach 1..................................              67              12              18               1
    Approach 2..................................             250              38              15              21
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Source: IPEDS

    Note: Table includes programs at IHEs only.
    The Department has no indication that programs at small entities 
are more likely to be ineligible for TEACH Grants or title IV, HEA 
funds. Since all private not-for-profit IHEs are considered to be small 
because none are dominant in the field, we would expect about 5 percent 
of TEACH Grant volume at teacher preparation programs at private not-
for-profit IHEs to be at ineligible programs. In 2012-13, approximately 
48 percent of TEACH Grant disbursements went to private not-for-profit 
IHEs, and by applying that to the estimated TEACH Grant volume in 2017 
of $101,092,285, the Department estimates that TEACH Grant volume at 
private not-for-profit IHEs in 2017 would be approximately $48.5 
million. At the five percent low-performing or at-risk rate assumed in 
the TEACH Grants portion of the Cost, Benefits, and Transfers section 
of the Regulatory Impact Analysis, TEACH Grant revenues would be 
reduced by approximately $2.4 million at programs at private not-for-
profit entities in the initial year the proposed regulations are in 
effect and a lesser amount after that.

[[Page 71872]]

Much of this revenue could be shifted to eligible programs within the 
IHE or the sector, and the cost to programs would be greatly reduced by 
students substituting other sources of funds for the TEACH Grants.

Description of the Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping and Other 
Compliance Requirements of the Regulations, Including an Estimate of 
the Classes of Small Entities that Will Be Subject to the Requirement 
and the Type of Professional Skills Necessary for Preparation of the 
Report or Record

    In addition to the teacher preparation programs at IHEs included in 
Table 4, approximately 1,281 alternative certification programs offered 
outside of IHEs are subject to the reporting requirements in the 
proposed regulations. The Department assumes that a significant 
majority of these programs are offered by non-profit entities and are 
not dominant in the field, so all of the alternative certification 
teacher preparation programs are considered to be small entities. 
However, the reporting burden for these programs falls on the States. 
As discussed in the Paperwork Reduction Act section of this notice, the 
estimated total paperwork burden on IHEs would decrease by 103,051 
hours. Small entities would benefit from this relief from the current 
institutional reporting requirements.

Identification, to the Extent Practicable, of All Relevant Federal 
Regulations That May Duplicate, Overlap or Conflict With the Proposed 
Regulation

    The proposed regulations are unlikely to conflict with or duplicate 
existing Federal regulations.

Alternatives Considered

    As described above, the Department participated in Negotiated 
Rulemaking in developing the proposed regulations and considered a 
number of options for some of the provisions including the definition 
of a teacher preparation program and the definition of a high-quality 
teacher preparation program for purposes of TEACH Grant eligibility. No 
alternatives focused specifically on small entities.

Clarity of the Regulations

    Executive Order 12866 and the Presidential memorandum ``Plain 
Language in Government Writing'' require each agency to write 
regulations that are easy to understand.
    The Secretary invites comments on how to make these proposed 
regulations easier to understand, including answers to questions such 
as the following:
     Are the requirements in the proposed regulations clearly 
stated?
     Do the proposed regulations contain technical terms or 
other wording that interferes with their clarity?
     Does the format of the proposed regulations (grouping and 
order of sections, use of headings, paragraphing, etc.) aid or reduce 
their clarity?
     Would the proposed regulations be easier to understand if 
we divided them into more (but shorter) sections? (A ``section'' is 
preceded by the symbol ``Sec.  '' and a numbered heading; for example, 
Sec.  686.3 Duration of student eligibility.)
     Could the description of the proposed regulations in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this preamble be more helpful in 
making the proposed regulations easier to understand? If so, how?
     What else could we do to make the proposed regulations 
easier to understand?
    To send any comments that concern how the Department could make 
these proposed regulations easier to understand, see the instructions 
in the ADDRESSES section of this preamble.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent 
burden, the Department provides the general public and Federal agencies 
with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing collections 
of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 
(PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This helps ensure that: The public 
understands the Department's collection instructions, respondents can 
provide the requested data in the desired format, reporting burden 
(time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are 
clearly understood, and the Department can properly assess the impact 
of collection requirements on respondents.
    Sections 612.3, 612.4, 612.5, 612.6, 612.7, 612.8, and 686.2 
contain information collection requirements. Under the PRA, the 
Department has submitted a copy of these sections to OMB for its 
review.
    A Federal agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of 
information unless OMB approves the collection under the PRA and the 
corresponding information collection instrument displays a currently 
valid OMB control number. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, 
no person is required to comply with, or is subject to penalty for 
failure to comply with, a collection of information if the collection 
instrument does not display a currently valid OMB control number.
    In the final regulations, we will display the control numbers 
assigned by OMB to any information collection requirements proposed in 
this NPRM and adopted in the final regulations.

Start-Up and Annual Reporting Burden

    These proposed regulations execute a statutory requirement that 
IHEs and States establish an information and accountability system 
through which IHEs and States report on the performance of their 
teacher preparation programs. Because parts of the proposed regulation 
would require IHEs and States to establish or scale up certain systems 
and processes in order to collect information necessary for annual 
reporting, IHEs and States may incur one-time start-up costs for 
developing those systems and processes. The burden associated with 
start-up and annual reporting is reported separately in this statement.

Section 612.3--Reporting Requirements for the Institutional Report 
Cards

    Section 205(a) of the HEA requires that each IHE that provides a 
teacher preparation program leading to State certification or licensure 
report on a statutorily enumerated series of data elements for the 
programs it provides. The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 
(HEOA) revised a number of the reporting requirements for IHEs.
    The proposed regulations under Sec.  612.3(a) would require that 
beginning on April 1, 2017, and annually thereafter, each IHE that 
conducts traditional or alternative route teacher preparation programs 
leading to State initial teacher certification or licensure and enrolls 
students receiving title IV, HEA funds report to the State on the 
quality of its programs using an IRC prescribed by the Secretary.

Start-Up Burden

Entity-Level and Program-Level Reporting
    Under the current IRC, IHEs typically report at the entity level 
rather than the program level. For example, if an IHE offers multiple 
teacher preparation programs in a range of subject areas (for example, 
music education and special education), that IHE gathers data on each 
of those programs, aggregates the data, and reports the required 
information as a single teacher preparation entity on a single report 
card. Under the proposed regulations and for the reasons discussed in 
the preamble to this notice of proposed rulemaking, reporting would now 
be required at the teacher preparation program level rather than at the 
entity

[[Page 71873]]

level. No additional data must be gathered as a consequence of this 
regulatory requirement; instead, IHEs would simply report the required 
data before, rather than after, aggregation.
    As a consequence, IHEs would not be required to alter appreciably 
their systems for data collection. However, the Department acknowledges 
that in order to communicate disaggregated data, minimal recordkeeping 
adjustments may be necessary. The Department estimates that initial 
burden for each IHE to adjust its recordkeeping systems would be 4 
hours per entity. In the most recent year for which data are available, 
1,522 IHEs reported required data to the Department through the IRC. 
Therefore, the Department estimates that the one-time total burden for 
IHEs to adjust recordkeeping systems would be 6,088 hours (1,522 IHEs 
multiplied by 4 burden hours per IHE).

Subtotal of Start-Up Burden Under Sec.  612.3

    The Department believes that IHEs' experience during prior title II 
reporting cycles has provided sufficient knowledge to ensure that IHEs 
will not incur any significant start-up burden, except for the change 
from entity-level to program-level reporting described above. 
Therefore, the subtotal of start-up burden for Sec.  612.3 is 6,088 
hours.

Annual Reporting Burden

Changes to the Institutional Report Card
    For a number of years IHEs have gathered successfully, aggregated, 
and reported data on teacher preparation program characteristics, 
including those required under the HEOA, to the Department using the 
IRC approved under OMB control number 1840-0744. The required reporting 
elements of the IRC principally concern admissions criteria, student 
characteristics, clinical preparation, numbers of teachers prepared, 
accreditation of the program, and the pass rates and scaled scores of 
teacher candidates on State teacher certification and licensure 
examinations.
    The Department received numerous comments from non-Federal 
negotiators about the current IRC during the negotiated rulemaking 
process. The non-Federal negotiators provided advice based on first-
hand experience with the IRC and from their knowledge of research on 
the relative predictive value of certain elements in the IRC. Based on 
these comments, the Department eliminated or changed many of the IRC 
elements to maximize the collection of useful, meaningful data while 
limiting the reporting burden on IHEs.
    Under the proposed regulations, IHEs would no longer be required to 
respond to certain elements in the IRC. We would eliminate a number of 
elements relating to admissions criteria (e.g., whether the IHE 
required a personality test or a recommendation for admission). In 
their place, we would add quantitative elements on the admission of 
students, including median incoming GPA and standardized test scores, 
if applicable. The Department was informed by non-Federal negotiators 
that IHEs already collect these data. Reporting them would both provide 
more useful data to the public and prospective students and still 
result in a net burden reduction in the number of elements reported by 
IHEs.
    Responding to the recommendations of non-Federal negotiators, the 
Department would further eliminate elements not required by statute 
that are burdensome to calculate, such as the average clock-hour 
requirements prior to clinical training, information on numbers of 
equivalent faculty, and prior-year pass rate and completer data that 
the Department is able to pre-populate. The Department would also 
change a number of elements requiring IHEs to provide lengthy narrative 
responses. Instead, IHEs could respond using drop-down menu choices. 
Most significantly, due to more effective technological integration 
with testing companies, the Department contractor responsible for the 
IRC will perform the entry for all testing data, representing a 
significant reduction in burden for IHEs.
    The Department also responded to guidance from the higher education 
and teaching communities that the current IRC did not provide 
sufficiently meaningful quantitative and comparable data on the 
performance of teacher preparation programs. The Department attempted 
to limit the reporting burden on IHEs while ensuring that statutorily 
required and meaningful elements would provide useful data on a 
quantitative and easily-comparable basis. The IRC required under the 
proposed regulations would not depart significantly from the existing 
IRC, except to the extent that elements would be eliminated or IHEs 
would report data already readily accessible.
    Given all of these reporting changes, the Department estimates that 
each IHE would require 68 fewer burden hours to prepare the revised IRC 
annually. The Department estimated that each IHE would require 146 
hours to complete the current IRC approved by OMB. There would thus be 
an annual burden of 78 hours to complete the revised IRC (146 hours 
minus 68 hours in reduced data collection). The Department estimates 
that 1,522 IHEs would respond to the IRC required under the proposed 
regulations, based on reporting figures from the most recent year data 
are available. Therefore, reporting data using the IRC would represent 
a total annual reporting burden of 118,716 hours (78 hours multiplied 
by 1,522 IHEs).
Entity-Level and Program-Level Reporting
    As noted in the start-up burden section of Sec.  612.3, under the 
current IRC, IHEs report teacher preparation program data at the entity 
level. The proposed regulations would require that each IHE report 
disaggregated data at the teacher preparation program level. The 
Department believes this proposed regulatory requirement would not 
require any additional data collection or appreciably alter the time 
needed to calculate data reported to the Department. However, the 
Department believes that some additional reporting burden would exist 
for IHEs' electronic input and submission of disaggregated data because 
each IHE typically houses multiple teacher preparation programs.
    Based on the most recent year of data available, the Department 
estimates that there are 22,312 teacher preparation programs at 1,522 
IHEs nationwide. Based on these figures, the Department estimates that 
on average, each of these IHEs offers 14.65 teacher preparation 
programs. Because each IHE already collects disaggregated IRC data, the 
Department estimates it will take each IHE one additional hour to fill 
in existing disaggregated data into the electronic IRC for each teacher 
preparation program it offers. Because IHEs already have to submit an 
IRC for the IHE, the added burden for reporting on a program level 
would be 13.65 hours (an average of 14.65 programs at one hour per 
program, minus the existing submission of one IRC for the IHE, or 13.65 
hours). Therefore, each IHE will incur an average burden increase of 
13.65 hours (1 hour multiplied by an average of 13.65 teacher 
preparation programs at each IHE), and there will be an overall burden 
increase of 20,775 hours each year associated with this proposed 
regulatory reporting requirement (13.65 multiplied by 1,522 IHEs).
Posting on the Institution's Web Site
    The proposed regulations would also require that the IHE provide 
the information reported on the IRC to the general public by 
prominently and promptly posting the IRC information on the IHE's Web 
site. Because the

[[Page 71874]]

Department believes it is reasonable to assume that an IHE offering a 
teacher preparation program and communicating data related to that 
program by electronic means maintains a Web site, the Department 
presumes that posting such information to an already-existing Web site 
would represent a minimal burden increase. The Department therefore 
estimates that IHEs would require 0.5 hours (30 minutes) to meet this 
requirement. This would represent a total burden increase of 761 hours 
each year for all IHEs (0.5 hours multiplied by 1,522 IHEs).
Subtotal of Annual Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.3
    Aggregating the annual burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections results in the following burdens: Together, all IHEs would 
incur a total burden of 118,716 hours to develop the systems needed to 
meet the requirements of the revised IRC, 20,775 hours to report 
program-level data, and 761 hours to post IRC data to their Web sites. 
This would constitute a total burden of 140,252 hours of annual burden 
nationwide.
Total Institutional Report Card Reporting Burden
    Aggregating the start-up and annual burdens calculated under the 
preceding sections results in the following burdens: Together, all IHEs 
would incur a total start-up burden under Sec.  612.3 of 6,088 hours 
and a total annual reporting burden under Sec.  612.3 of 140,252 hours. 
This would constitute a total burden of 146,340 total burden hours 
under Sec.  612.3 nationwide.
    The burden estimate for the existing IRC approved under OMB control 
number 1840-0744 was 146 hours for each IHE with a teacher preparation 
program. When the current IRC was established, the Department estimated 
that 1,250 IHEs would provide information using the electronic 
submission of the form for a total burden of 182,500 hours for all IHEs 
(1,250 IHEs multiplied by 146 hours). Applying these estimates to the 
current number of IHEs that are required to report (1,522) would 
constitute a burden of 222,212 hours (1,522 IHEs multiplied by 146 
hours). Based on these estimates, the revised IRC would constitute a 
net burden reduction of 75,872 hours nationwide (222,212 hours minus 
146,340 hours).

Section 612.4--Reporting Requirements for the State Report Card

    Section 205(b) of the HEA requires that each State that receives 
funds under the HEA provide to the Secretary and make widely available 
to the public not less than the statutorily required specific 
information on the quality of traditional and alternative route teacher 
preparation programs. The State must do so in a uniform and 
comprehensible manner, conforming with definitions and methods 
established by the Secretary. Section 205(c) of the HEA directs the 
Secretary to prescribe regulations to ensure the validity, reliability, 
accuracy, and integrity of the data submitted. Section 206(b) requires 
that IHEs assure the Secretary that their teacher training programs 
respond to the needs of local educational agencies, be closely linked 
with the instructional decisions new teachers confront in the 
classroom, and prepare candidates to work with diverse populations and 
in urban and rural settings, as applicable.
    Executing the relevant statutory directives, the proposed 
regulations under Sec.  612.4(a) would require that starting April 1, 
2018, and annually thereafter, each State report on the SRC the quality 
of all approved teacher preparation programs in the State, whether or 
not they enroll students receiving Federal assistance under the HEA, 
including distance education programs. This new SRC, to be implemented 
in 2018, is an update of the current SRC. The State must also make the 
SRC information widely available to the general public by posting the 
information on the State's Web site.
    Section 103(20) of the HEA and Sec.  612.2(d) of the proposed 
regulations define ``State'' to include nine locations in addition to 
the 50 States: The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of 
Columbia, Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Freely Associated 
States, which include the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the 
Federated States of Micronesia, and Republic of Palau. For this reason, 
all reporting required of States explicitly enumerated under Sec.  
205(b) of the HEA (and the related portions of the regulations, 
specifically Sec. Sec.  612.4(a) and 612.6(b)), apply to these 59 
States. However, certain additional regulatory requirements 
(specifically Sec. Sec.  612.4(b), 612.4(c), 612.5, and 612.6(a)) only 
apply to the 50 States of the Union, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, 
and the District of Columbia. The burden estimates under those portions 
of this report apply to those 52 States. For a fuller discussion of the 
reasons for the application of certain regulatory provisions to 
different States, see the preamble to this notice of proposed 
rulemaking.
Entity-Level and Program-Level Reporting
    As noted in the start-up and annual burden sections of Sec.  612.3, 
under the current information collection process, data are collected at 
the entity level, and the proposed regulations would require data 
reporting at the program level. In 2013, States reported to the 
Department for the first time on the number of programs offered in 
their States. In that collection, which covers the 2011-2012 academic 
year, States reported that there were 25,000 teacher preparation 
programs offered, including 22,312 at IHEs and 2,688 through 
alternative route teacher preparation programs not associated with 
IHEs. Given that 2013 was the first reporting year for this metric, it 
is possible that there is some error in the reporting. However, as 
noted in subsequent sections of this burden statement, these reported 
data are within the bounds of other estimates we have calculated. 
Because the remainder of the data reporting discussed in this burden 
statement is transmitted using the SRC, for those burden estimates 
concerning reporting on the basis of teacher preparation programs, the 
Department uses the estimate of 25,000 teacher preparation programs.
Start Up and Annual Burden Under Sec.  612.4(a)
    Section 612.4(a) would codify State reporting requirements 
expressly referenced in section 205(b) of the HEA; the remainder of 
Sec.  612.4 would provide for reporting consistent with the directives 
to the Secretary under Sections 205(b) and (c) and the required 
assurance described in Section 206(c).
    The HEOA revised a number of the reporting requirements for States. 
The requirements of the SRC are more numerous than those contained in 
the IRC, but the reporting elements required in both are similar in 
many respects. In addition, the Department has successfully integrated 
reporting to the extent that data reported by IHEs in the IRC is pre-
populated in the relevant fields on which the States are required to 
report in the SRC. In addition to the elements discussed in Sec.  612.3 
of this burden statement regarding the IRC, under the statute a State 
must also report on its certification and licensure requirements and 
standards, state-wide pass rates and scaled scores, shortages of highly 
qualified teachers, and information related to low-performing or at-
risk teacher preparation programs in the State.
    The SRC currently in use, approved under OMB control number 1840-
0744,

[[Page 71875]]

collects information on these elements. States have been successfully 
reporting information under this collection for many years. The burden 
estimate for the existing SRC was 911 burden hours per State. In the 
burden estimate for that SRC, the Department reported that 59 States 
were required to report data, equivalent to the current requirements. 
This represented a total burden of 53,749 hours for all States (59 
States multiplied by 911 hours). This burden calculation was made on 
entity-level, rather than program-level, reporting (for a more detailed 
discussion of the consequences of this issue, see the sections on 
entity-level and program-level reporting in Sec. Sec.  612.3 and 
612.4). However, because relevant program-level data reported by the 
IHEs on the IRC will be pre-populated for States on the SRC, the burden 
associated with program-level reporting under Sec.  612.4(a) will be 
minimal. Those elements that will require additional burden are 
discussed in the subsequent paragraphs of this section.
Elements Changed in the State Report Card
    The Department received numerous comments from non-Federal 
negotiators regarding the SRC during the negotiated rulemaking process; 
many of the non-Federal negotiators have direct experience with the 
relative efficacy and burden of the various SRC reporting requirements. 
Based on these comments, the Department eliminated or changed a number 
of SRC elements to maximize the collection of meaningful data while 
minimizing burden. Under the proposed regulations, States would no 
longer be required to respond to certain elements in the SRC. We 
eliminated a number of elements relating to admissions criteria for 
programs (similar to those eliminated from the IRC). We would put in 
their place quantitative elements on the admission of students, 
including median incoming GPA and standardized test scores, if 
applicable. The Department was informed by non-Federal negotiators that 
schools already collect these data and reporting them would both 
provide more useful data and still result in a net burden reduction in 
the number of elements reported.
    Because the Department must continue to collect IRC and SRC data 
until the proposed reporting requirements are effective, the 
Department, prior to the development of this notice of proposed 
rulemaking, submitted a proposed information collection to OMB \84\ 
that reflected the basis for some of the proposed changes to the SRC. 
We calculated there that the estimated burden would be reduced from 911 
hours per State to 250 hours per State. While the Department has not 
yet completed analyzing comments on this Information Collection Request 
(ICR), the burden decrease expected under that ICR is due in part to 
the elimination of a number of data fields. That revised burden 
estimate also reflects States' experience with filling out the SRC 
(including, for example, databases of demographic data compiled by 
States) and pre-populating of previous years' data. Most significantly, 
the burden reduction represents the successful technical integration 
between test companies and the Department's title II contractor, such 
that all test-related data are managed, calculated, and uploaded by the 
test companies and contractor, with no additional burden incurred by 
States.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \84\ For an analysis of the basis for this reduction estimate, 
see the Department of Education Information Collection System at 
http://edicsweb.ed.gov/ and select collection number 04871 under 
``browse pending collections.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition to those changes reflected in the ICR sent to OMB, the 
Department, responding to the recommendations of non-Federal 
negotiators, also proposed to eliminate numerous other elements that 
are not required by statute, burdensome to calculate, and can be pre-
populated (such as total program completers in prior years, certain 
specific requirements related to licensure requirements not indicative 
of program or teacher quality, and duplicative questions already asked 
in other portions of the SRC). The Department also proposes to change 
reporting some elements as lengthy narrative responses to drop-down 
menus. Elimination of these elements represents a significant burden 
reduction in reporting data using the SRC. The Department estimates 
that the elimination of these elements constitutes a burden reduction 
of 65 hours for each State above the efficiencies identified in the 
information collection in the preceding paragraph. For filing the SRC, 
the total burden reduction is 80 percent for each State, equal to 726 
hours of staff time annually (911 hours minus the 661 hours 
representing efficiencies identified in the proposed information 
collection, minus the 65 hours representing the additional burden 
reduction pursuant to the proposed regulations). New SRC filing burden 
time would be 185 hours per year for each State.
    At the request of non-Federal negotiators, the Department added 
some data fields to the SRC to reflect specific statutory provisions in 
Sec.  205(b). These include additional demographic information, 
qualitative clinical data, and data on shortages of highly qualified 
teachers in specific subject areas. The Department estimates that 
providing this additional information would require an additional 50 
hours for each State to gather and report.
    Using the above calculations, the Department estimates that the 
total reporting burden for each State would be 235 hours (185 hours for 
the revised SRC plus the additional statutory reporting requirements 
totaling 50 hours). This would represent a reduction of 676 burden 
hours for each State to complete the requirements of the SRC, as 
compared to approved OMB collection 1840-0744 (911 burden hours under 
the current SRC compared to 235 burden hours under the revised SRC). 
The total burden for States to report this information would be 13,865 
hours (235 hours multiplied by 59 States).
Posting on the State's Web Site
    The proposed regulations would also require that the State provide 
the information reported on the SRC to the general public by 
prominently and promptly posting the SRC information on the State's Web 
site. Because the Department believes it is reasonable to assume that 
each State that communicates data related to its teacher preparation 
programs by electronic means maintains a Web site, the Department 
presumes that posting such information to an already-existing Web site 
would represent a minimal burden increase. The Department therefore 
estimates that States would require 0.5 hours (30 minutes) to meet this 
requirement. This would represent a total burden increase of 29.5 hours 
each year for all IHEs (0.5 hours multiplied by 59 States).

Subtotal Sec.  612.4(a) Start-Up and Annual Reporting Burden

    As noted in the preceding discussion, there is no start-up burden 
associated solely with Sec.  612.4(a). Therefore, the aggregate start-
up and annual reporting burden associated with reporting elements under 
Sec.  612.4(a) would be 13,894.5 hours (235 hours multiplied by 59 
States plus 0.5 hours for each of the 59 States).
Reporting Required Under Sec.  612.4(b) and Sec.  612.4(c)
    The preceding burden discussion of Sec.  612.4 focused on burdens 
related to the reporting requirements required under section 205(b) of 
the HEA and codified in regulation at Sec.  612.4(a). The

[[Page 71876]]

remaining burden discussion of Sec.  612.4 concerns regulatory 
reporting requirements required under Sec. Sec.  612.4(b)-612.4(c).

Start-Up Burden

Meaningful Differentiations
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(1), a State would be required to make 
meaningful differentiations in teacher preparation program performance 
using at least four performance levels--low-performing teacher 
preparation program, at-risk teacher preparation program, effective 
teacher preparation program, and exceptional teacher preparation 
program--based on the indicators in Sec.  612.5 and including, in 
significant part, employment outcome for high-need schools and student 
learning outcomes.
    The Department believes that State higher education authorities 
responsible for making State-level classifications of teacher 
preparation programs would require time to make meaningful 
differentiations in their classifications and determine whether 
alternative performance levels are warranted. States are required to 
consult with external stakeholders, review best practices by early 
adopter States that have more experience in program classification, and 
seek technical assistance.
    States would also have to determine how it would make such 
classifications. For example, a State may choose to classify all 
teacher preparation programs on an absolute basis using a cut-off score 
that weighs the various indicators, or a State may choose to classify 
teacher preparation programs on a relative basis, electing to classify 
a certain top percentile as exceptional, the next percentile as 
effective, and so on. In exercising this discretion, States may choose 
to consult with various external and internal parties and discuss 
lessons learned with those States already making such classifications 
of their teacher preparation programs.
    The Department estimates that each State would require 21 hours to 
make these determinations, and this would constitute a one-time total 
burden of 1,092 hours (21 hours multiplied by 52 States).
    As a part of the proposed regulation, a State would be required to 
classify each teacher preparation program on the basis of these 
differentiated performance levels using the indicators of academic 
content knowledge and teaching skills in Sec.  612.5 (see the 
discussion of Sec.  612.5 for a detailed discussion of the burden 
associated with each of these indicators).
    The proposed regulatory requirement under Sec.  612.4(b)(1) and 
Sec.  612.4(b)(2) that States rely in significant part on employment 
outcomes in high-need schools and student learning outcomes and ensure 
that no program is deemed effective or higher unless it has 
satisfactory or higher student learning outcomes would not, in itself, 
create additional reporting requirements. (See discussion related to 
burden associated with reporting student learning outcomes in the 
start-up burden section of Sec.  612.5.) However, States would have the 
discretion under this proposed regulation to determine the meaning of 
``significant'' and ``satisfactory.'' Similar to the consultative 
process described in the previous paragraphs of this section, a State 
may consult with early adopter States to determine best practices for 
making such determinations and whether an underlying qualitative basis 
should exist for these terms. The Department estimates that this 
decision-making process would take 14 hours for each State, and the 
one-time total burden associated with these determinations would be 728 
hours (14 hours multiplied by 52 States).
Assurance of Specialized Accreditation
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(A), a State would be required 
to provide for each teacher preparation program disaggregated data for 
each of the indicators identified pursuant to Sec.  612.5. See the 
start-up burden section of Sec.  612.5 for a more detailed discussion 
of the burden associated with gathering the indicator data required to 
be reported under this regulatory section. See the annual reporting 
burden section of 612.4 for a discussion of the ongoing reporting 
burden associated with reporting disaggregated indicator data under 
this regulatory provision. No further burden exists beyond the burden 
described in these two sections.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(B), a State would be required 
to provide, for each teacher preparation program in the State, the 
State's assurance that the teacher preparation program either: (a) Is 
accredited by a specialized agency or (b) provides teacher candidates 
with content and pedagogical knowledge, quality clinical preparation, 
and rigorous teacher entry and exit qualifications. See the start-up 
burden section of Sec.  612.5 for a detailed discussion of the burden 
associated with gathering the indicator data required to be reported 
under this regulatory section. See the annual reporting burden section 
of Sec.  612.4 for a discussion of the ongoing reporting burden 
associated with reporting these assurances. No further burden exists 
beyond the burden described in these two sections.
Indicator Weighting
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(ii), a State would be required to 
provide its weighting of the different indicators in Sec.  612.5 for 
purposes of describing the State's assessment of program performance. 
See the start-up burden section of Sec.  612.4 on stakeholder 
consultation for a detailed discussion of the burden associated with 
establishing the weighting of the various indicators under Sec.  612.5. 
See the annual reporting burden section of Sec.  612.4 for a discussion 
of the ongoing reporting burden associated with reporting these 
relative weightings. No further burden exists beyond the burden 
described in these two sections.
State-Level Rewards or Consequences
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(iii), a State would be required to 
provide the State-level rewards or consequences associated with the 
designated performance levels. See the start-up burden section of Sec.  
612.4 on stakeholder consultation for a more detailed discussion of the 
burden associated with establishing these rewards or consequences. See 
the annual reporting burden section of Sec.  612.4 for a discussion of 
the ongoing reporting burden associated with reporting these relative 
weightings. No further burden exists beyond the burden described in 
these two sections.
Aggregation of Small Programs
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4), a State would be required to 
ensure that all of its teacher preparation programs in that State are 
represented on the SRC. The Department recognized that many teacher 
preparation programs consist of a small number of prospective teachers 
and that reporting on these programs could present privacy and data 
validity issues. After discussion and input from various non-Federal 
negotiators during the negotiated rulemaking process, the Department 
elected to set a required reporting program size threshold of 25 (for a 
more detailed discussion of this determination, see the general 
preamble discussion regarding Sec.  612.4). However, the Department 
realized that, on the basis of research examining accuracy and validity 
relating to reporting small program sizes, some States may prefer to 
report on programs smaller than 25. Proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(i) 
permits States to report using a lower program size threshold. In order 
to determine the preferred program size threshold for its programs, a 
State may review existing research or the practices of other States

[[Page 71877]]

that set program size thresholds to determine feasibility for its own 
teacher preparation program reporting. The Department estimates that 
such review would require 14 hours for each State, and this would 
constitute a one-time total burden of 728 hours (14 hours multiplied by 
52 States).
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(4), all teacher preparation entities 
would be required to report on the remaining small programs that do not 
meet the program size threshold the State chooses. States will be able 
to do so through a combination of two possible aggregation methods 
described in Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii). The preferred aggregation 
methodology is to be determined by the States after consultation with a 
group of stakeholders. For a detailed discussion of the burden related 
to this consultation process, see the start-up burden section of Sec.  
612.4, which discusses the stakeholder consultation process. Apart from 
the burden discussed in that section, no other burden is associated 
with this requirement.
Stakeholder Consultation
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(c), a State would be required to consult 
with a representative group of stakeholders to determine the procedures 
for assessing and reporting the performance of each teacher preparation 
program in the State. This stakeholder group, composed of a variety of 
members representing viewpoints and interests affected by these 
proposed regulations, would provide input on a number of issues 
concerning the State's discretion granted under these proposed 
regulations. There are four issues in particular on which the 
stakeholder group would advise the State--
    a. the relative weighting of the indicators identified in Sec.  
612.5;
    b. the preferred method for aggregation of data such that 
performance data for a maximum number of small programs are reported;
    c. the State-level rewards or consequences associated with the 
designated performance levels; and
    d. the appropriate process and opportunity for programs to 
challenge the accuracy of their performance data and program 
classification.
    The Department believes that this consultative process would 
require that the group convene at least three times to afford each of 
the stakeholder representatives multiple opportunities to meet and 
consult with the constituencies they represent. Further, the Department 
believes that members of the stakeholder group would require time to 
review relevant materials and academic literature and advise on the 
relative strength of each of the performance indicators under Sec.  
612.5, as well as any other matters requested by the State.
    These stakeholders would also require time to advise whether any of 
the particular indictors would have more or less predictive value for 
the teacher preparation programs in their State, given its unique 
traits. Finally, because some States have already implemented one or 
more components of the proposed regulatory indicators of program 
quality, these stakeholders would require time to review these States' 
experiences in implementing similar systems. The Department estimates 
that the combination of gathering the stakeholder group multiple times, 
review of the relevant literature and other States' experiences, and 
making determinations unique to their particular State would take 156 
hours for each State. This would constitute a one-time total of 8,736 
hours for all States (168 hours multiplied by 52 States).

Subtotal of Start-Up Burden Under Sec.  612.4(b) and Sec.  612.4(c)

    Aggregating the start-up burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections results in the following burdens: All States would incur a 
total burden of 1,092 hours to make meaningful differentiations in 
program classifications, 728 hours to define the terms ``significant'' 
and ``satisfactory'' under these sections, 728 hours to determine the 
State's aggregation of small programs, and 8,736 hours to complete the 
stakeholder consultation process. This would constitute a total burden 
of 11,284 hours of start-up burden nationwide.

Annual Reporting Burden

Classification of Teacher Preparation Programs
    The bulk of the State burden associated with assigning programs 
among classification levels would be in gathering and compiling data on 
the indicators of program quality that compose the basis for the 
classification. Once a State has made a determination of how a teacher 
preparation program would be classified at a particular performance 
level, applying the data gathered under Sec.  612.5 to this 
classification basis would be straightforward. The Department estimates 
that States would require 0.5 hours (30 minutes) to apply already-
gathered indicator data to existing program classification methodology. 
The total burden associated with classification of all teacher 
preparation programs using meaningful differentiations would be 12,500 
hours each year (0.5 hours multiplied by 25,000 teacher preparation 
programs).
Disaggregated Data on Each Indicator in Sec.  612.5
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(A), States would be required to 
report on the indicators of program performance in proposed Sec.  
612.5. For a fuller discussion of the burden related to the reporting 
of this requirement, see the annual reporting burden section of Sec.  
612.5. Apart from the burden discussed in this section, no other burden 
is associated with this requirement.
Indicator Weighting
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(ii), States would be required to 
report the relative weight it places on each of the different 
indicators enumerated in Sec.  612.5. The burden associated with this 
reporting is minimal: After the State, in consultation with a group of 
stakeholders, has made the determination about the percentage weight it 
will place on each of these indicators, reporting this information on 
the SRC is a simple matter of inputting a number for each of the 
indicators. Under the proposed regulations at Sec.  612.5, this would 
minimally require the State input eight general indicators of quality. 
Note: the eight indicators are--
    a. associated student learning outcome results;
    b. teacher placement results;
    c. teacher retention results;
    d. teacher placement rate calculated for high-need school results;
    e. teacher retention rate calculated for high-need school results;
    f. teacher satisfaction survey results;
    g. employer satisfaction survey results; and
    h. assurance of specialized accreditation or assurance of content 
and pedagogical knowledge, quality clinical preparation, and rigorous 
entry and exit standards.
    This reporting burden would not be affected by the number of 
teacher preparation programs in a State, because such weighting would 
apply equally to each program. Although the State would have the 
discretion to add indicators, the Department does not believe that 
transmission of an additional figure representing the percentage 
weighting assigned to that indicator would constitute an appreciable 
burden increase. The Department therefore estimates that each State 
would incur a

[[Page 71878]]

burden of 0.25 hours (15 minutes) to report the relative weighting of 
the regulatory indicators of program performance. This would constitute 
a total burden on States of 13 hours each year (0.25 hours multiplied 
by 52 States).
State-Level Rewards or Consequences
    Similar to the reporting required under Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(ii), 
after a State has made the requisite determination about rewards and 
consequences, reporting those rewards and consequences would represent 
a relatively low burden. States would be required to report this on the 
SRC during the first year of implementation, the SRC could provide 
States with a drop-down list representing common rewards or 
consequences in use by early adopter States, and States would be able 
to briefly describe those rewards or consequences not represented in 
the drop-down options. For subsequent years, the SRC could be pre-
populated with the prior-year's selected rewards and consequences, such 
that there would be no further burden associated with subsequent year 
reporting unless the State altered its rewards and consequences. For 
these reasons, the Department estimates that States will incur, on 
average, 0.5 hours (30 minutes) of burden in the first year of 
implementation to report the State-level rewards and consequences, and 
0.1 hours (6 minutes) of burden in each subsequent year. The Department 
therefore estimates that the total burden for the first year of 
implementation of this proposed regulatory requirement would be 26 
hours (0.5 hours multiplied by 52 States) and 5.2 hours each year 
thereafter (0.1 hours multiplied by 52 States).
Stakeholder Consultation
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5), during the first year of 
reporting and every five years thereafter, States would be required to 
report on the procedures they established in consultation with the 
group of stakeholders described under Sec.  612.4(c)(1). The burden 
associated with the first and third of these four procedures, the 
weighting of the indicators and State-level rewards and consequences 
associated with each performance level, respectively, are discussed in 
the preceding paragraphs of this section.
    The second procedure, the method by which small programs are 
aggregated, would be a relatively straightforward reporting procedure 
on the SRC. Pursuant to Sec.  612.4(b)(4)(ii), States are permitted to 
use one of two methods, or a combination of both in aggregating small 
programs. A State would be allowed to aggregate programs that are 
similar in teacher preparation subject matter. A State would also be 
allowed aggregate using prior year data, including that of multiple 
prior years. Or a State would be allowed to use a combination of both 
methods. On the SRC, the State would simply indicate the method it 
uses. The Department estimates that States would require 0.5 hours (30 
minutes) to enter these data every fifth year. On an annualized basis, 
this would therefore constitute a total burden of 5.2 hours (0.5 hours 
multiplied by 52 States divided by five to annualize burden for 
reporting every fifth year).
    The fourth procedure that States would be required to report under 
proposed Sec.  612.4(b)(5) is the method by which teacher preparation 
programs in the State are able to challenge the accuracy of their data 
and the classification of their program. First, the Department believes 
that States would incur a paperwork burden each year from recordkeeping 
and publishing decisions of these challenges. Because the Department 
believes the instances of these appeals would be relatively rare, we 
estimate that each State would incur 6 hours of burden each year 
related to recordkeeping and publishing decisions. This would 
constitute an annual reporting burden of 312 hours (6 hours multiplied 
by 52 States).
    After States and their stakeholder groups determine the preferred 
method for programs to challenge data, reporting that information would 
likely take the form of narrative responses. This is because the method 
for challenging data may differ greatly from State to State, and it is 
difficult for the Department to predict what methods States will 
choose. The Department therefore estimates that reporting this 
information in narrative form during the first year would constitute a 
burden of 3 hours for each State. This would represent a total 
reporting burden of 156 hours (3 hours multiplied by 52 States).
    In subsequent reporting cycles, the Department would be able to 
examine State responses and (1) pre-populate this response for States 
that have not altered their method for challenging data or (2) provide 
a drop-down list of representative alternatives. This would minimize 
subsequent burden for most States. The Department therefore estimates 
that in subsequent reporting cycles (every five years under the 
proposed regulations), only 10 States would require more time to 
provide additional narrative responses totaling 3 burden hours each, 
with the remaining 42 States incurring a negligible burden. This 
represents an annualized reporting burden of 6 hours for those 10 
States (3 hours multiplied by 10 States, divided by 5 years), for a 
total annualized reporting burden of 60 hours for subsequent years (6 
hours multiplied by 10 States).
    Under proposed Sec.  612.4(c)(2), each State would be required to 
periodically examine the quality of its data collection and reporting 
activities and modify those activities as appropriate. The Department 
believes that this review would be carried out in a manner similar to 
the one described for the initial stakeholder determinations in the 
preceding paragraphs: States would consult with representative groups 
to determine their experience with providing and using the collected 
data, and they would consult with data experts to ensure the validity 
and reliability of the data collected. The Department believes such a 
review would recur every three years, on average. Because this review 
would take place years after the State's initial implementation of the 
proposed regulations, the Department further believes that the State's 
review would be of relatively little burden. This is because the 
State's review would be based on the State's own experience with 
collecting and reporting data pursuant to the proposed regulations, and 
because States would be able to consult with many other States to 
determine best practices. For these reasons, the Department estimates 
that the periodic review and modification of data collection and 
reporting would require 16 hours every three years or an annualized 
burden of 5.3 hours for each State. This would constitute a total 
annualized burden of 275.6 hours for all States (5.3 hours per year 
multiplied by 52 States).

Subtotal Annual Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.4(b) and Sec.  
612.4(c)

    Aggregating the annual burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections results in the following: All States would incur a burden of 
12,500 hours to report classifications of teacher preparation programs, 
13 hours to report State indicator weightings, 26 hours in the first 
year and 5.2 hours in subsequent years to report State-level rewards 
and consequences associated with each performance classification, 5.2 
hours to report the method of program aggregation, 312 hours for 
recordkeeping and publishing appeal decisions, 156 hours the first year 
and 60 hours in subsequent years to report the process for challenging 
data and program classification, and 275.6 hours to report on the 
examination of data

[[Page 71879]]

collection quality. This totals 13,287.5 hours of annual burden in the 
first year and 13,171.5 hours of annual burden in subsequent years 
nationwide.

Total Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.4

    Aggregating the start-up and annual burdens calculated under the 
preceding sections results in the following burdens: All States would 
incur a total burden under Sec.  612.4(a) of 13,894.5 hours, a start-up 
burden under Sec.  612.4(b) and Sec.  612.4(c) of 11,284 hours, and an 
annual burden under Sec.  612.4(b) and Sec.  612.4(c) of 13,287.5 hours 
in the first year and 13,171.5 hours in subsequent years. This totals 
between 38,350 and 38,466 total burden hours under Sec.  612.4 
nationwide. Based on the prior estimate of 53,749 hours of reporting 
burden on OMB collection 1840-0744, the total burden reduction under 
Sec.  612.4 is between 15,283 hours and 15,399 hours (53,749 hours 
minus a range of 38,350 and 38,466 total burden hours).

Section 612.5--Indicators a State Must Use To Report on Teacher 
Preparation Program Performance

    The proposed regulations at Sec.  612.5(a)(1) through (a)(4) would 
identify those indicators that a State is required to use to assess the 
academic content knowledge and teaching skills of new teachers from 
each of its teacher preparation programs. Under the proposed 
regulations, a State would be required to use the following indicators 
of teacher preparation program performance: (a) Student learning 
outcomes, (b) employment outcomes, (c) survey outcomes, and (d) whether 
the program (1) is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency or 
(2) produces teacher candidates with content and pedagogical knowledge 
and quality clinical preparation, who have met rigorous entry and exit 
standards. Proposed Sec.  612.5(b) would permit a State, at its 
discretion, to establish additional indicators of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills.

Start-Up Burden

Student Learning Outcomes
    Consistent with teacher-student data link requirements related to 
the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), State Longitudinal 
Data System program (SLDS), and the ESEA Flexibility initiative, 
proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(1) would require States to provide data on 
student learning outcomes, defined as the aggregate learning outcomes 
of students taught by new teachers trained by each teacher preparation 
program in the State. States would have the discretion to report 
student learning outcomes on the basis of student growth (that could 
factor in variance in expected growth for students with different 
growth trajectories), teacher evaluation measures, or both. States also 
would have discretion on whether to use a value-added method of 
adjusting for student characteristics. Regardless of which method 
States use to report student learning outcomes, States would be 
required to link the results of those indicators of teaching skill to 
the teacher preparation programs with which the teachers are 
associated. States would have discretion on a variety of related 
technical matters, such as whether to track out-of-State teachers who 
were prepared within the State. While comprehensive data regarding the 
readiness of all States to comply with providing information on student 
learning outcomes do not exist, the Department has estimated the start-
up costs for States based on a number of sources.
    First, each State has provided an assurance that it would provide 
student-growth assessment data for teachers who teach reading/language 
arts and mathematics in tested grades. This assurance was provided as a 
consequence of receiving a share of $48.6 billion in funds from the 
State Fiscal Stabilization Fund (SFSF), authorized by ARRA. The 
Department estimates that no additional burden would be incurred to 
measure student growth for these grades and subjects. There would be 
some cost, however, for mapping student growth data results back to 
relevant teacher preparation programs.
    As of June 15, 2014, the Secretary has approved requests by 42 
States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 
for flexibility regarding specific requirements of ESEA, as amended, in 
exchange for rigorous and comprehensive State plans designed to improve 
educational outcomes for all students, close achievement gaps, increase 
equity, and improve the quality of instruction. As of the same date, 
the Department is working with 3 more States pursuing similar 
flexibility agreements. In their request for flexibility, each State 
has committed to implementing a statewide comprehensive teacher 
evaluation system covering those teaching in grades and subjects where 
there is statewide testing and those grades and subjects in which there 
is not statewide testing. The proposed regulation's definition of a 
teacher evaluation measure with respect to non-tested grades and 
subjects and its implementation timeline are aligned with requirements 
included in the Department's ESEA Flexibility initiative. Accordingly, 
for grades and subjects for which assessments are not required under 
ESEA, States, under the proposed regulations, would have the discretion 
to make use of various alternative forms of measurement, including use 
of ``student learning objectives'' as per a statewide rubric.
    To estimate the cost of using student learning objectives to 
measure student growth, we examined publicly available State and LEA 
rubrics and guidelines. Guidance issued by the Rhode Island Department 
of Education includes a detailed timeline and checklist that we used to 
develop an estimate of what it might cost the remaining States to 
develop and implement student learning objectives.\85\ The estimate 
assumes that these States have no existing State or LEA-level 
structures in place to assess student learning outcomes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \85\ These estimates are entirely based on analysis and 
interpretation conducted by U.S. Department of Education staff and 
should not be attributed to the Rhode Island Department of 
Education. This analysis was based primarily on the timeline and 
checklist, which begins on page 23 of the following document: http://www.maine.gov/education/effectiveness/GuideSLO-Rhode%20Island.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Based on the specific steps required in this guidance, we estimate 
that for the average teacher, developing and implementing student 
learning objectives would require 6.85 hours of the teacher's time and 
5.05 hours of an evaluator's time. However, for the reasons explained 
in detail in the Regulatory Impact Assessment section of this notice, 
the Department estimates that these burden estimates would apply to 
31,676 of these teachers in six States. For these teachers, the total 
burden would equal 376,944 hours (31,676 teachers multiplied by 11.9 
hours). For the remaining two States that have not already committed to 
doing so under the Race to the Top program or as part of their request 
for ESEA flexibility, the Department estimates that teachers and 
evaluators would only need to spend a combined three hours to develop 
and measure against student learning objectives for the 4,629 new 
teachers of students in non-tested grades and subjects in these areas. 
This would constitute a total burden of 13,887 hours (3 hours of 
teacher and evaluator time multiplied by 4,629 teachers). The total 
burden would therefore equal 390,831 hours (13,887 hours plus 376,944 
hours).
    In addition to creating the systems for evaluating student learning 
outcomes,

[[Page 71880]]

the proposed regulations would also require that States link student 
growth or teacher evaluation data back to each teacher's preparation 
programs consistent with State discretionary guidelines included in 
Sec.  612.4. Currently, few States have such capacity. However, based 
on data from the SLDS program, it appears that 30 States, the District 
of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico either already have 
the ability to aggregate data on student achievement and map back to 
teacher preparation programs or have committed to do so. For these 30 
States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 
we estimate that no additional costs will be needed to link student 
learning outcomes back to teacher preparation programs.
    For the remaining States, the cost estimates of establishing this 
mapping depend on their current statewide longitudinal data capacity. 
While the Department has awarded $575.7 million in SLDS grants to 
support data system development in 47 States, the District of Columbia, 
and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, there remains a substantial 
variance in capacity among States to implement these data linkages. For 
example, some States would need to link currently disparate 
postsecondary education data systems to elementary and secondary school 
data systems that do not yet exist, while other States may already have 
linkages among the former or latter, though not between the two. The 
Department estimates, therefore, that the remaining 20 States that 
currently lack the capacity to link data systems would require 2,940 
hours for each State, for a total burden of 58,800 hours nationwide 
(2,940 hours multiplied by 20 States).
Employment Outcomes
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) would require a State to provide data on 
each teacher preparation program's teacher placement rate, defined as 
the combined non-duplicated percentage of new teachers and recent 
graduates hired in a full-time teaching position for the grade level, 
span, and subject area in which a candidate was prepared, as well as 
the teacher placement rate calculated for high-need schools. High-need 
schools would be defined in proposed Sec.  612.2(d) by using the 
definition of ``high-need school'' in section 200(11) of the HEA. The 
proposed regulations would give States discretion to exclude those new 
teachers or recent graduates from this measure if they are teaching in 
a private school, teaching in another State, enrolled in graduate 
school, or engaged in military service. States would also have the 
discretion to treat this rate differently for alternative route and 
traditional route providers.
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) would require a State to provide data on 
each teacher preparation program's teacher retention rate, defined as 
any of the following: (a) The percentage of new teachers who have been 
hired in full-time teaching positions and served for periods of at 
least three consecutive school years within five years of being granted 
a level of certification that allows them to serve as teachers of 
record; (b) the percentage of new teachers who have been hired in full-
time teaching positions and reached a level of tenure or other 
equivalent measures of retention within five years of being granted a 
level of certification that allows them to serve as teachers of record; 
or (c) one hundred percent less the percentage of new teachers who have 
been hired in full-time teaching positions and whose employment was not 
continued by their employer for reasons other than budgetary 
constraints within five years of being granted a level of certification 
or licensure that allows them to serve as teachers of record. In 
addition, proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2) would require a State to provide 
data on each teacher preparation program's teacher retention rate 
calculated for high-need schools. The proposed regulations would give 
States discretion to exclude those new teachers or recent graduates 
from this measure if they are teaching in a private school (or other 
school not requiring State certification), another State, enrolled in 
graduate school, or serving in the military. States would also have the 
discretion to treat this rate differently for alternative route and 
traditional route providers.
    Currently, 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the 
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico currently collect some certification 
information on individual teachers. Some States further collect such 
data related to teacher preparation programs (42 States), location of 
the teacher preparation program (47 States), and certification year (51 
States). (For a more detailed discussion of these and other estimates 
in this section, see the Regulatory Impact Assessment discussion of 
costs, benefits and transfers regarding employment outcomes.) 
Furthermore, 39 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth 
of Puerto Rico currently collect data on certification placement and 
have the capability to link that data back to the program that prepared 
each individual teacher. The Department believes that these States 
would not incur additional burden for employment outcome reporting 
except to the extent that they would have to identify recent graduates 
not employed in a full-time teaching position within the State. A State 
would incur a minimal burden by matching its certification data against 
a roster of recent graduates from each teacher preparation program in 
the State to determine teacher placement and retention rates for those 
teachers who received their initial certification within the last three 
years. Additionally, adding a ``high-need school'' marker to such a 
list would also incur minimal additional burden.
    The remaining 11 States would likely incur additional burden in 
collecting information about the employment and retention of recent 
graduates of teacher preparation programs in its jurisdiction. To the 
extent that it is not possible to establish these measures using 
existing data systems, States may need to obtain some or all of this 
information from teacher preparation programs or from the teachers 
themselves upon requests for certification and licensure. The 
Department estimates that 150 hours may be required at the State level 
to collect information about new teachers employed in full-time 
teaching positions (including designing the data request instruments, 
disseminating them, providing training or other technical assistance on 
completing the instruments, collecting the data, and checking their 
accuracy), which would amount to a total of 1,650 hours (150 hours 
multiplied by 11 States).
Survey Outcomes
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(3) would require a State to provide data on 
each teacher preparation program's teacher survey results. This would 
require States to report data from a survey of new teachers in their 
first year of teaching designed to capture their perceptions of whether 
the training that they received was sufficient to meet classroom and 
profession realities.
    Proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(3) would also require a State to provide 
data on each teacher preparation program's employer survey results. 
This would require States to report data from a survey of employers or 
supervisors designed to capture their perceptions of whether the new 
teachers they employ or supervise were prepared sufficiently to meet 
classroom and profession realities.
    Some States and IHEs already survey graduates of their teacher 
preparation programs. The sampling size and length of survey instrument 
can strongly affect the potential burden associated with administering 
the survey. The Department has learned that some States already have 
experience carrying out such surveys (for a more detailed discussion of 
these and other estimates

[[Page 71881]]

in this section, see the Regulatory Impact Assessment discussion of 
costs, benefits and transfers regarding student learning outcomes). In 
order to account for variance in States' abilities to conduct such 
surveys, the variance in the survey instruments themselves, and the 
need to ensure statistical validity and reliability, the Department 
assumes a somewhat higher burden estimate than States' initial 
experiences.
    Based on Departmental consultation with researchers experienced in 
carrying out survey research, the Department assumes that survey 
instruments would not require more than 30 minutes to complete. The 
Department further assumes that a State would be able to develop a 
survey in 1,620 hours. Assuming that States with experience in 
administering surveys would incur a lower cost, the Department assumes 
that the total burden incurred nationwide would maximally be 31,824 
hours (612 hours multiplied by 52 States).
Assurance of Accreditation
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(4), States would be required to 
assure that each teacher preparation program in the State either: (a) 
Is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency recognized by the 
Secretary for accreditation of professional teacher education programs 
or (b) provides teacher candidates with content and pedagogical 
knowledge and quality clinical preparation, and has rigorous teacher 
candidate entry and exit standards consistent with section 206(c) of 
the HEA.
    The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), a 
union of two formerly independent national accrediting agencies, the 
National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the 
Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC), reports that currently 
it has fully accredited approximately 800 IHEs. The existing IRC 
currently requires reporting of whether each teacher preparation 
program is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency, and if so, 
which one. For this reason, the Department believes that no significant 
start-up burden will be associated with State determinations of 
specialized accreditation of teacher preparation programs for those 
programs that are already accredited.
    Based on the 1,522 IHEs that reported using the most recent IRC, 
the Department estimates that States would have to provide the 
assurances described in proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(4)(ii) for the 
remaining 731 IHEs.\86\ Based on an estimated average of 14.65 teacher 
preparation programs at each IHE (see Sec.  612.3 of this burden report 
for a more detailed explanation of this figure), the Department 
estimates that States will have to provide such assurances for 
approximately 10,716 programs at IHEs nationwide (731 IHEs multiplied 
by 14.65). In addition, the Department believes that States will have 
to provide such assurances for all 2,688 programs at alternative routes 
not associated with IHEs (see the entity-level and program-level 
reporting section in Sec.  612.4 for a fuller discussion of this 
figure). Therefore, the Department estimates that States will have to 
provide such assurances for 13,404 teacher preparation programs 
nationwide (10,716 unaccredited programs at IHEs plus 2,688 programs at 
alternative routes not affiliated with an IHE).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \86\ Data from CAEP's ``Annual Report to the public, the states, 
policymakers, and the education profession'' (2013) indicated that 
791 institutions were currently accredited by either TEAC or NCATE. 
As noted above, Mary Brabeck, chair of CAEP, has indicated in 
Congressional testimony that ``more than 900 educator preparation 
providers participate in the educator preparation accreditation 
system.'' We have used the estimate of 791 programs for purposes of 
these calculations to estimate the number of programs that are 
currently not accredited by CAEP or its predecessor organizations. 
As a result, any estimates of cost or burden arising from this 
estimate will likely overestimate the costs associated with 
assurance of accreditation.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Department believes that States will be able to make use of 
accreditation guidelines from specialized accrediting agencies to 
determine the measures that will adequately inform a State whether its 
teacher preparation programs provide teacher candidates with content 
and pedagogical knowledge, quality clinical preparation, and have 
rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications. The 
Department estimates that States will require 2 hours for each teacher 
preparation program to determine whether or not it can provide such 
assurance. Therefore, the Department estimates that the total reporting 
burden to provide these assurances would be 26,808 hours (13,404 
teacher preparation programs multiplied by 2 hours).

Subtotal of Start-Up Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.5

    Aggregating the start-up burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections results in the following burdens: All States would incur a 
burden of 390,831 hours to establish student learning outcome measures 
for all subjects and grades, 58,800 hours to link those student 
learning outcome measures back to each teacher's preparation program, 
1,650 hours to measure employment outcomes, 26,808 hours to develop 
surveys, and 31,824 hours to establish the process for assurance of 
certain indicators for teacher preparation programs without specialized 
accreditation. This totals 509,913 hours of start-up burden nationwide.

Annual Reporting Burden

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a), States would be required to 
transmit, through specific elements on the SRC, information related to 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills of new 
teachers for each teacher preparation program in the State. We discuss 
the burden associated with establishing systems related to gathering 
these data in the section discussing start-up burden associated with 
Sec.  612.5. The following section describes the burden associated with 
gathering these data and reporting them to the Department annually.

Student Learning Outcomes

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(1), States would be required to 
transmit information related to student learning outcomes for each 
teacher preparation program in the State. The Department believes that 
in order to ensure the validity of the data, each State would require 2 
hours to gather and compile data related to the student learning 
outcomes of each teacher preparation program. Much of the burden 
related to data collection would be built into State-established 
reporting systems, limiting the burden related to data collection to 
technical support to ensure proper reporting and to correct data that 
had been inputted incorrectly. States would have the discretion to use 
student growth measures or teacher evaluation measures in determining 
student learning outcomes. Regardless of the measure(s) used, the 
Department estimates that States would require 0.5 hours (30 minutes) 
for each teacher preparation program to convey this information to the 
Department through the SRC. This is because these measures would be 
calculated on a quantitative basis. The combination of gathering and 
reporting data related to student learning outcomes would therefore 
constitute a burden of 2.5 hours for each teacher preparation program, 
and would represent a total burden of 62,500 hours annually (2.5 hours 
multiplied by 25,000 teacher preparation programs).

Employment Outcomes

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(2), States would be required to 
transmit information related to employment outcomes for each teacher 
preparation

[[Page 71882]]

program in the State. In order to report employment outcomes to the 
Department, States would be required to compile and transmit teacher 
placement rate data, teacher placement rate data calculated for high-
need schools, teacher retention rate data, and teacher retention rate 
data for high-need schools. Similar to the process for reporting 
student learning outcome data, much of the burden related to gathering 
data on employment outcomes would be subsumed into the State-
established data systems, which would provide information on whether 
and where teachers were employed. The Department estimates that States 
would require 3 hours to gather data both on teacher placement and 
teacher retention for each teacher preparation program in the State. 
Reporting these data using the SRC would be relatively straightforward. 
The measures would be the percentage of teachers placed and the 
percentage of teachers who continued to teach, both generally and at 
high-need schools. The Department therefore estimates that States would 
require 0.5 hours (30 minutes) for each teacher preparation program to 
convey this information to the Department through the SRC. The 
combination of gathering and reporting data related to employment 
outcomes would therefore constitute a burden of 3.5 hours for each 
teacher preparation program and would represent a total burden of 
87,500 hours annually (3.5 hours multiplied by 25,000 teacher 
preparation programs).

Survey Outcomes

    In addition to the start-up burden needed to produce a survey, 
States would incur annual burdens to administer the survey. Surveys 
would include, but would not be limited to, a teacher survey and an 
employer survey, designed to capture perceptions of whether new 
teachers who are employed as teachers in their first year of teaching 
in the State where the teacher preparation program is located possess 
the skills needed to succeed in the classroom. The burdens for 
administering an annual survey would be borne by the State 
administering the survey and the respondents completing it. For the 
reasons discussed in the Regulatory Impact Assessment section of this 
notice, the Department estimates that States would require 
approximately 0.5 hours (30 minutes) per respondent to collect a 
sufficient number of survey instruments to ensure an adequate response 
rate. The Department employs an estimate of 285,181 respondents (70 
percent of 407,402--the 203,701 completers plus their 203,701 
employers) that would be required to complete the survey. Therefore, 
the Department estimates that the annual burden to respondents 
nationwide would be 142,591 hours (285,181 respondents multiplied by 
0.5 hours per respondent).
    With respect to burden incurred by States to administer the surveys 
annually, the Department estimates that one hour of burden would be 
incurred for every respondent to the surveys. This would constitute an 
annual burden nationwide of 285,181 hours (285,181 respondents 
multiplied by one hour per respondent).
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(3), after these surveys are 
administered, States would be required to report the information using 
the SRC. In order to report survey outcomes to the Department, the 
Department estimates that States would need 0.5 hours to report the 
quantitative data related to the survey responses for each instrument 
on the SRC, constituting a total burden of one hour to report data on 
both instruments. This would represent a total burden of 25,000 hours 
annually (1 hour multiplied by 25,000 teacher preparation programs). 
The total burden associated with administering, completing, and 
reporting data on the surveys would therefore constitute 452,772 hours 
annually (142,591 hours plus 285,181 hours plus 25,000 hours).

Assurance of Specialized Accreditation

    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(4)(i), States would be required to 
report whether each program in the State is accredited by a specialized 
accrediting agency. The Department estimates that 726 IHEs offering 
teacher preparation programs are or will be accredited by a specialized 
accrediting agency (see the start-up burden discussion for Sec.  612.5 
for an explanation of this figure). Using the IRC, IHEs already report 
to States whether teacher preparation programs have specialized 
accreditation. This reporting element would be pre-populated for States 
on the SRC, and is reflected in the burden calculation relating to SRC 
reporting in Sec.  612.4 of this burden statement. The Department 
estimates no additional burden for this reporting element.
    Under proposed Sec.  612.5(a)(4)(ii), for those programs that are 
not accredited by a specialized accrediting agency, States would be 
required to report on certain indicators in lieu of that accreditation: 
Whether the program provides teacher candidates with content and 
pedagogical knowledge and quality clinical preparation, and has 
rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications. Such 
requirements should be built into State approval of relevant programs. 
The Department estimates that States would require 0.25 hours (15 
minutes) to provide to the Secretary an assurance, in a yes/no format, 
whether each teacher preparation program in its jurisdiction not 
holding a specialized accreditation from CAEP, NCATE, or TEAC meets 
these indicators.
    As discussed in the start-up burden section of Sec.  612.5 that 
discusses assurance of specialized accreditation, the Department 
estimates States would have to provide such assurances for 13,404 
teacher preparation programs that do not have specialized 
accreditation. Therefore, the Department estimates that the total 
burden associated with providing an assurance that these teacher 
preparation programs meet these indicators is 3,351 hours (0.25 hours 
multiplied by the 13,404 teacher preparation programs that do not have 
specialized accreditation).

Subtotal of Annual Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.5

    Aggregating the annual burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections results in the following burdens: All States would incur a 
burden of 62,500 hours to report on student learning outcome measures 
for all subjects and grades, 87,500 hours to report on employment 
outcomes, 452,772 hours to report on survey outcomes, and 3,351 hours 
to provide assurances that teacher preparation programs without 
specialized accreditation meet certain indicators. This totals 606,123 
hours of annual burden nationwide.

Total Reporting Burden Under Sec.  612.5

    Aggregating the start-up and annual burdens calculated under the 
preceding sections results in the following burdens: All States would 
incur a start-up burden under Sec.  612.5 of 509,913 hours and an 
annual burden under Sec.  612.5 of 606,123 hours. This totals 1,116,036 
burden hours under Sec.  612.5 nationwide.

Section 612.6--What Must a State Consider in Identifying Low-Performing 
Teacher Preparation Programs or At-Risk Programs

    The proposed regulations in Sec.  612.6 would require States to use 
criteria, including, at a minimum, indicators of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills from Sec.  612.5, to identify low-
performing or at-risk teacher preparation programs.
    For a fuller discussion of the burden related to the consideration 
and selection of the criteria reflected in the indicators described in 
Sec.  612.5, see the start-up burden section of Sec.  612.4(b) and

[[Page 71883]]

Sec.  612.4(c) discussing meaningful differentiations. Apart from that 
burden discussion, the Department believes States would incur no other 
burden related to this proposed regulatory provision.

Section 612.7--Consequences for a Low-Performing Teacher Preparation 
Program That Loses the State's Approval or the State's Financial 
Support

    For any IHE administering a teacher preparation program that has 
lost State approval or financial support based on being identified as a 
low-performing teacher preparation program, the proposed regulations 
under Sec.  612.7 require the IHE to--(a) notify the Secretary of its 
loss of State approval or financial support within thirty days of such 
designation; (b) immediately notify each student who is enrolled in or 
accepted into the low-performing teacher preparation program and who 
receives funding under title IV, HEA that the IHE is no longer eligible 
to provide such funding to them; and (c) disclose information on its 
Web site and promotional materials regarding its loss of State approval 
or financial support and loss of eligibility for title IV funding.
    The Department does not expect that a large percentage of programs 
will be subject to a loss of title IV eligibility. The Department 
estimates that approximately 50 programs will lose their State approval 
or financial support.
    For those 50 programs, the Department estimates that it will take 
each program 15 minutes to notify the Secretary of its loss of 
eligibility; 5 hours to notify all students who are enrolled in or 
accepted into the program and who receives funding under title IV of 
the HEA; and 30 minutes to disclose this information on its Web sites 
and promotional materials, for a total of 5.75 hours per program. The 
Department estimates the total burden at 287.5 hours (50 programs 
multiplied by 5.75 hours).

Section 612.8--Regaining Eligibility To Accept or Enroll Students 
Receiving Title IV, HEA Funds After Loss of State Approval or Financial 
Support

    The proposed regulations in Sec.  612.8 provide a process for a 
low-performing teacher preparation program that has lost State approval 
or financial support to regain its ability to accept and enroll 
students who receive title IV, HEA funds. Under this process, IHEs 
would submit an application and supporting documentation demonstrating 
to the Secretary: (1) Improved performance on the teacher preparation 
program performance criteria reflected in indicators described in Sec.  
612.5 as determined by the State; and (2) reinstatement of the State's 
approval or the State's financial support.
    The process by which programs and institutions apply for title IV 
eligibility already accounts for the burden associated with this 
provision.

Total Reporting Burden Under Part 612

    Aggregating the total burdens calculated under the preceding 
sections of Part 612 results in the following burdens: Total burden 
hours incurred under Sec.  612.3 is 146,340 hours, under Sec.  612.4 is 
between 38,350 hours and 38,466 hours, under Sec.  612.5 is 1,116,036 
hours, under Sec.  612.7 is 288 hours, and under Sec.  612.8 is 200 
hours. This totals between 1,301,213 hours and 1,301,330 hours 
nationwide.

Reporting Burden Under Part 686

    The proposed changes to Part 686 in these regulations have no 
measurable effect on the burden currently identified in the OMB Control 
Numbers 1845-0083 and 1845-0084.
    Consistent with the discussions above, the following chart 
describes the sections of the proposed regulations involving 
information collections, the information being collected, and the 
collections the Department will submit to the OMB for approval and 
public comment under the Paperwork Reduction Act. In the chart, the 
Department labels those estimated burdens not already associated an OMB 
approval number under a single prospective designation ``OMB 1840-
0744.'' This label represents a single information collection; the 
different sections of the proposed regulations are separated in the 
table below for clarity and to appropriately divide the burden hours 
associated with each proposed regulatory section.
    Please note that the changes in burden estimated in the chart are 
based on the change in burden under the current IRC OMB control numbers 
1840-0744 and ``OMB 1840-0744.'' The burden estimate for 612.3 bases 
the burden estimate on the most recent data available for the number of 
IHEs that are required to report (i.e. 1,522 IHEs using most recent 
data available rather than 1,250 IHEs using prior estimates). For a 
complete discussion of the costs associated with the burden incurred 
under these proposed regulations, please see the Regulatory Impact 
Assessment, specifically the accounting statement.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                      OMB Control Number
                                      Information        and estimated
       Regulatory section             collection         change in the
                                                            burden
------------------------------------------------------------------------
612.3...........................  This proposed       OMB 1840-0744_The
                                   regulatory          burden would
                                   section would       decrease by
                                   require IHEs that   83,482 hours.
                                   provide a teacher
                                   preparation
                                   program leading
                                   to State
                                   certification or
                                   licensure to
                                   provide data on
                                   teacher
                                   preparation
                                   program
                                   performance to
                                   the States.
612.4...........................  This proposed       OMB 1840-0744_The
                                   regulatory          burden would
                                   section would       decrease by
                                   require States      between 15,283
                                   that receive        hours and 15,400
                                   funds under the     hours.
                                   Higher Education
                                   Act of 1965, as
                                   amended, to
                                   report to the
                                   Secretary on the
                                   quality of
                                   teacher
                                   preparation in
                                   the State, both
                                   for traditional
                                   teacher
                                   preparation
                                   programs and for
                                   alternative route
                                   to State
                                   certification and
                                   licensure
                                   programs.
612.5...........................  This proposed       OMB 1840-0744_The
                                   regulatory          burden would
                                   section would       increase by
                                   require States to   606,123.
                                   use certain
                                   indicators of
                                   teacher
                                   preparation
                                   performance for
                                   purposes of the
                                   State report card.
612.6...........................  This proposed       OMB 1840-0744_The
                                   regulatory          burden associated
                                   section would       with this
                                   require States to   regulatory
                                   use criteria,       provision is
                                   including           accounted for in
                                   indicators of       other portions of
                                   academic content    this burden
                                   knowledge and       statement.
                                   teaching skills,
                                   to identify low-
                                   performing or at-
                                   risk teacher
                                   preparation
                                   programs.

[[Page 71884]]

 
612.7...........................  The proposed        OMB 1840-0744_The
                                   regulations under   burden would
                                   this section        increase by 288
                                   would require any   hours.
                                   IHE administering
                                   a teacher
                                   preparation
                                   program that has
                                   lost State
                                   approval or
                                   financial support
                                   based on being
                                   identified as a
                                   low-performing
                                   teacher
                                   preparation
                                   program to notify
                                   the Secretary and
                                   students
                                   receiving title
                                   IV, HEA funds,
                                   and to disclose
                                   this information
                                   on its Web site.
612.8...........................  The proposed        There is no burden
                                   regulations in      associated with
                                   this section        this regulatory
                                   would provide a     provision.
                                   process for a low-
                                   performing
                                   teacher
                                   preparation
                                   program that lost
                                   State approval or
                                   financial support
                                   to regain its
                                   ability to accept
                                   and enroll
                                   students who
                                   receive title IV
                                   funds.
    Total Change in Burden......  ..................  Total increase in
                                                       burden under
                                                       parts 612 would
                                                       be between
                                                       507,530 hours and
                                                       507,646 hours.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If you want to comment on the proposed information collection 
requirements, please send your comments to the Office of Information 
and Regulatory Affairs, OMB, Attention: Desk Officer for U.S. 
Department of Education. Send these comments by email to 
OIRA_DOCKET@omb.eop.gov or by fax to (202) 395-6974. You may also send 
a copy of these comments to the Department contact named in the 
ADDRESSES section of this preamble.
    We have prepared an Information Collection Request (ICR) for OMB 
collection 1840-0744. In preparing your comments you may want to review 
the ICR, which is available at www.reginfo.gov and for which the 
comment period will run concurrently with the comment period of the 
NPRM. To review the ICR on www.reginfo.gov, click on Information 
Collection Review.
    We consider your comments on these proposed collections of 
information in--
      Deciding whether the proposed collections are 
necessary for the proper performance of our functions, including 
whether the information will have practical use;
      Evaluating the accuracy of our estimate of the 
burden of the proposed collections, including the validity of our 
methodology and assumptions;
      Enhancing the quality, usefulness, and clarity 
of the information we collect; and
      Minimizing the burden on those who must 
respond. This includes exploring the use of appropriate automated, 
electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques.
    OMB is required to make a decision concerning the collections of 
information contained in these proposed regulations between 30 and 60 
days after publication of this document in the Federal Register. 
Therefore, to ensure that OMB gives your comments full consideration, 
it is important that OMB receives your comments by January 2, 2015. 
This does not affect the deadline for your comments to us on the 
proposed regulations.

Intergovernmental Review

    These programs are subject to Executive Order 12372 and the 
regulations in 34 CFR part 79. One of the objectives of the Executive 
order is to foster an intergovernmental partnership and a strengthened 
federalism. The Executive order relies on processes developed by State 
and local governments for coordination and review of proposed Federal 
financial assistance.
    This document provides early notification of our specific plans and 
actions for these programs.

Assessment of Educational Impact

    In accordance with section 411 of the General Education Provisions 
Act, 20 U.S.C. 1221e-4, the Secretary particularly requests comments on 
whether these proposed regulations would require transmission of 
information that any other agency or authority of the United States 
gathers or makes available.

Federalism

    Executive Order 13132 requires us to ensure meaningful and timely 
input by State and local elected officials in the development of 
regulatory policies that have federalism implications. ``Federalism 
implications'' means substantial direct effects on the States, on the 
relationship between the National Government and the States, or on the 
distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of 
government. The proposed regulations in Sec.  612.4 may have federalism 
implications, as defined in Executive Order 13132. We encourage State 
and local elected officials and others to review and provide comments 
on these proposed regulations.
    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, 
audiotape, or compact disc) on request to the person listed under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free 
Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the 
Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System 
at: www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well 
as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF 
you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the 
site.
    You may also access documents of the Department published in the 
Federal Register by using the article search feature at: 
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.
    (Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number does not apply.)

List of Subjects

34 CFR Part 612

    Administrative practice and procedure, Colleges and universities, 
Education, Elementary and secondary education, Grant programs--
education, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Student aid.

34 CFR Part 686

    Administrative practice and procedure, Colleges and universities, 
Education, Elementary and secondary education, Grant programs--
education, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Student aid.

    Dated: November 25, 2014.
Arne Duncan,
Secretary of Education.
    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Secretary proposes 
to

[[Page 71885]]

amend chapter VI of title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations as 
follows:

0
1. Part 612 is added to read as follows:

PART 612--TITLE II REPORTING SYSTEM

Subpart A--Scope, Purpose and Definitions
Sec.
612.1 Scope and purpose.
612.2 Definitions.
Subpart B--Reporting Requirements
612.3 What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the 
Institutional Report Card?
612.4 What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the State 
Report Card?
612.5 What indicators must a State use to report on teacher 
preparation program performance for purposes of the State report 
card?
612.6 What must States consider in identifying low-performing 
teacher preparation programs or at-risk teacher preparation 
programs, and what regulatory actions must a State take with respect 
to those programs identified as low-performing?
Subpart C--Consequences of Withdrawal of State Approval or Financial 
Support
612.7 What are the consequences for a low-performing teacher 
preparation program that loses the State's approval or the State's 
financial support?
612.8 How does a low-performing teacher preparation program regain 
eligibility to accept or enroll students receiving Title IV, HEA 
funds after loss of the State's approval or the State's financial 
support?

    Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d, unless otherwise noted.

Subpart A--Scope, Purpose and Definitions


Sec.  612.1  Scope and purpose.

    This part establishes regulations related to the teacher 
preparation program accountability system under title II of the HEA. 
This part includes:
    (a) Institutional Report Card reporting requirements.
    (b) State Report Card reporting requirements.
    (c) Requirements related to the indicators States must use to 
report on teacher preparation program performance.
    (d) Requirements related to the areas States must consider to 
identify low-performing teacher preparation programs and at-risk 
teacher preparation programs and actions States must take with respect 
to those programs.
    (e) The consequences for a low-performing teacher preparation 
program that loses the State's approval or the State's financial 
support.
    (f) The conditions under which a low-performing teacher preparation 
program that has lost the State's approval or the State's financial 
support may regain eligibility to resume accepting and enrolling 
students who receive title IV, HEA funds.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d)

Sec.  612.2  Definitions.

    (a) The following terms used in this part are defined in the 
regulations for Institutional Eligibility under the Higher Education 
Act of 1965, as amended, 34 CFR part 600:

Distance education
Secretary
State
Title IV, HEA program

    (b) The following terms used in this part are defined in subpart A 
of the Student Assistance General Provisions, 34 CFR part 668:

Payment period
TEACH Grant

    (c) The following term used in this part is defined in 34 CFR 77.1:

Local educational agency (LEA)

    (d) Other definitions used in this part are defined as follows:
    At-risk teacher preparation program: A teacher preparation program 
that is identified as at-risk of being low-performing by a State based 
on the State's assessment of teacher preparation program performance 
under Sec.  612.4.
    Candidate accepted into a teacher preparation program: An 
individual who has been admitted into a teacher preparation program but 
who has not yet enrolled in any coursework that the institution has 
determined to be part of that teacher preparation program.
    Candidate enrolled in a teacher preparation program: An individual 
student who has been accepted into a teacher preparation program and is 
in the process of completing coursework but has not yet completed the 
teacher preparation program.
    Content and pedagogical knowledge: An understanding of the central 
concepts and structures of the discipline in which a teacher candidate 
has been trained, and how to create effective learning experiences that 
make the discipline accessible and meaningful for all students, 
including a distinct set of instructional skills to address the needs 
of English language learners and students with disabilities, in order 
to assure mastery of the content by the students, as described in 
applicable professional, State, or institutional standards.
    Effective teacher preparation program: A teacher preparation 
program that is identified as effective by a State based on the State's 
assessment of teacher preparation program performance under Sec.  
612.4.
    Employer survey: A survey of employers or supervisors designed to 
capture their perceptions of whether the new teachers they employ or 
supervise, who attended teacher preparation programs in the State where 
the new teachers are employed or supervised, were effectively prepared.
    Employment outcomes: Data, measured by the teacher placement rate, 
the teacher placement rate calculated for high-need schools, the 
teacher retention rate, and the teacher retention rate calculated for 
high-need schools, on the effectiveness of a teacher preparation 
program in preparing, placing, and supporting new teachers consistent 
with local education agency (LEA) needs.
    Exceptional teacher preparation program: A teacher preparation 
program that is identified as exceptional by a State based on the 
State's assessment of teacher preparation program performance under 
Sec.  612.4.
    High-need school: A school that, based on the most recent data 
available, meets one or both of the following:
    (i) The school is in the highest quartile of schools in a ranking 
of all schools served by a local educational agency (LEA), ranked in 
descending order by percentage of students from low-income families 
enrolled in such schools, as determined by the LEA based on one of the 
following measures of poverty:
    (A) The percentage of students aged 5 through 17 in poverty counted 
in the most recent census data approved by the Secretary.
    (B) The percentage of students eligible for a free or reduced price 
school lunch under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act [42 
U.S.C. 1751 et seq.].
    (C) The percentage of students in families receiving assistance 
under the State program funded under part A of title IV of the Social 
Security Act [42 U.S.C. 601 et seq.].
    (D) The percentage of students eligible to receive medical 
assistance under the Medicaid program.
    (E) A composite of two or more of the measures described in 
paragraphs (i)(A) through (D) of this definition.
    (ii) In the case of--
    (A) An elementary school, the school serves students not less than 
60 percent of whom are eligible for a free or reduced price school 
lunch under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act; or
    (B) Any other school that is not an elementary school, the other 
school serves students not less than 45 percent

[[Page 71886]]

of whom are eligible for a free or reduced price school lunch under the 
Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act.
    Low-performing teacher preparation program: A teacher preparation 
program that is identified as low-performing by a State based on the 
State's assessment of teacher preparation program performance under 
Sec.  612.4.
    New teacher: A recent graduate or alternative route participant 
who, within the last three title II reporting years, as defined in the 
report cards pursuant to Sec. Sec.  612.3 and 612.4, has received a 
level of certification or licensure that allows him or her to serve in 
the State as a teacher of record for K-12 students and, at a State's 
discretion, preschool students.
    Quality clinical preparation: Training that integrates content, 
pedagogy, and professional coursework around a core of pre-service 
clinical experiences. Such training must, at a minimum--
    (i) Be provided, at least in part, by qualified clinical 
instructors, including school and LEA-based personnel, who meet 
established qualification requirements and who use a training standard 
that is made publicly available;
    (ii) Include multiple clinical or field experiences, or both, that 
serve diverse, rural, or underrepresented student populations in 
elementary through secondary school, including English language 
learners and students with disabilities, and that are assessed using a 
performance-based protocol to demonstrate teacher candidate mastery of 
content and pedagogy; and
    (iii) Require that teacher candidates use research-based practices, 
including observation and analysis of instruction, collaboration with 
peers, and effective use of technology for instructional purposes.
    Recent graduate: An individual whom a teacher preparation program 
has documented as having met all the requirements of the program within 
the last three title II reporting years, as defined in the report cards 
prepared under Sec. Sec.  612.3 and 612.4. Documentation may take the 
form of a degree, institutional certificate, program credential, 
transcript, or other written proof of having met the program's 
requirements. In applying this definition, whether an individual has or 
has not been hired as a full-time teacher or been recommended to the 
State for initial certification or licensure may not be used as a 
criterion for determining if the individual is a recent graduate.
    Rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications: 
Qualifications of a teacher candidate established by a teacher 
preparation program prior to the candidate's completion of the program 
using, at a minimum, rigorous entrance requirements based on multiple 
measures, and rigorous exit criteria based on an assessment of 
candidate performance that relies on validated professional teaching 
standards and measures of the candidate's effectiveness that include, 
at a minimum, measures of curriculum planning, instruction of students, 
appropriate plans and modifications for all students, and assessment of 
student learning.
    Student achievement in non-tested grades and subjects:
    For purposes of determining student growth in grades and subjects 
in which assessments are not required under section 1111(b)(3) of the 
Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA), 
measures of student learning and performance, such as student results 
on pre-tests and end-of-course tests; objective performance-based 
assessments; student learning objectives; student performance on 
English language proficiency assessments; and other measures of student 
achievement that are rigorous, comparable across schools, and 
consistent with State guidelines.
    Student achievement in tested grades and subjects: For purposes of 
determining student growth for grades and subjects in which assessments 
are required under section 1111(b)(3) of the ESEA--
    (i) A student's score on the State's assessments under section 
1111(b)(3) of the ESEA and, as appropriate;
    (ii) Other measures of student learning, such as those described in 
the definition of Student achievement in non-tested grades and 
subjects, provided that the measures are rigorous, comparable across 
schools, and consistent with State guidelines.
    Student growth: For an individual student, the change in student 
achievement in tested grades and subjects and the change in student 
achievement in non-tested grades and subjects between two or more 
points in time.
    Student learning outcomes: For each teacher preparation program in 
a State, data on the aggregate learning outcomes of students taught by 
new teachers. These data are calculated by the State using a student 
growth measure, a teacher evaluation measure, or both.
    Survey outcomes: Qualitative and quantitative data collected 
through survey instruments, including, but not limited to, a teacher 
survey and an employer survey, designed to capture perceptions of 
whether new teachers who are employed as teachers in their first year 
teaching in the State where the teacher preparation program is located 
possess the skills needed to succeed in the classroom.
    Teacher evaluation measure: By grade span and subject area and 
consistent with statewide guidelines, the percentage of new teachers 
rated at each performance level under an LEA teacher evaluation system 
that differentiates teachers on a regular basis using at least three 
performance levels and multiple valid measures in determining each 
teacher's performance level. For purposes of this definition, multiple 
valid measures of performance levels must include, as a significant 
factor, data on student growth for all students (including English 
language learners and students with disabilities), and other measures 
of professional practice (such as observations based on rigorous 
teacher performance standards or other measures which may be gathered 
through multiple formats and sources such as teacher portfolios and 
student and parent surveys).
    Teacher placement rate: (i) Calculated annually and pursuant to 
Sec.  612.5(a), the combined non-duplicated percentage of new teachers 
and recent graduates who have been hired in a full-time teaching 
position for the grade level, span, and subject area in which the 
teachers and recent graduates were prepared.
    (ii) At the State's discretion, the rate calculated under paragraph 
(i) of this definition may exclude one or more of the following, 
provided that the State uses a consistent approach to assess and report 
on all of the teacher preparation programs in the State:
    (A) New teachers or recent graduates who have taken teaching 
positions in another State.
    (B) New teachers or recent graduates who have taken teaching 
positions in private schools.
    (C) New teachers or recent graduates who have taken teaching 
positions that do not require State certification.
    (D) New teachers or recent graduates who have enrolled in graduate 
school or entered military service.
    Teacher preparation entity: An institution of higher education or 
other organization that is authorized by the State to prepare teachers.
    Teacher preparation program: A program, whether traditional or 
alternative route, offered by a teacher preparation entity that leads 
to a specific State teacher certification or licensure in a specific 
field.
    Teacher retention rate: (i) Calculated annually and pursuant to 
Sec.  612.5(a), any of the following rates, as determined by the State 
provided that the State uses a consistent approach to assess and report

[[Page 71887]]

on all of the teacher preparation programs in the State:
    (A) The percentage of new teachers who have been hired in full-time 
teaching positions and served for periods of at least three consecutive 
school years within five years of being granted a level of 
certification that allows them to serve as teachers of record.
    (B) The percentage of new teachers who have been hired in full-time 
teaching positions and reached a level of tenure or other equivalent 
measure of retention within five years of being granted a level of 
certification that allows them to serve as teachers of record.
    (C) One hundred percent less the percentage of new teachers who 
have been hired in full-time teaching positions and whose employment 
was not continued by their employer for reasons other than budgetary 
constraints within five years of being granted a level of certification 
or licensure that allows them to serve as teachers of record.
    (ii) At the State's discretion, the rates calculated under this 
definition may exclude one or more of the following, provided that the 
State uses a consistent approach to assess and report on all teacher 
preparation programs in the State:
    (A) New teachers who have taken teaching positions in other States.
    (B) New teachers who have taken teaching positions in private 
schools.
    (C) New teachers who are not retained due to particular market 
conditions or circumstances particular to the LEA beyond the control of 
teachers or schools.
    (D) New teachers who have enrolled in graduate school or entered 
military service.
    Teacher survey: A survey of new teachers serving in full-time 
teaching positions for the grade level, span, and subject area in which 
the teachers were prepared that is designed to capture their 
perceptions of whether the preparation that they received from their 
teacher preparation programs was effective.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d)

Subpart B--Reporting Requirements


Sec.  612.3  What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the 
Institutional Report Card?

    Beginning on October 1, 2017, and annually thereafter, each 
institution of higher education that conducts traditional teacher 
preparation programs or alternative routes to State certification or 
licensure programs, and that enrolls students receiving title IV HEA 
program funds--
    (a) Must report to the State on the quality of teacher preparation 
and other information consistent with section 205(a) of the HEA, using 
an institutional report card that is prescribed by the Secretary;
    (b) Must prominently and promptly post the institutional report 
card information on the institution's Web site and, if applicable, on 
the teacher preparation program portion of the institution's Web site; 
and
    (c) May also provide the institutional report card information to 
the general public in promotional or other materials it makes available 
to prospective students or other individuals.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d)

Sec.  612.4  What are the regulatory reporting requirements for the 
State Report Card?

    (a) General. Beginning on April 1, 2018, and annually thereafter, 
each State must--
    (1) Report to the Secretary, using a State report card that is 
prescribed by the Secretary, on--
    (i) The quality of all approved teacher preparation programs in the 
State (both traditional teacher preparation programs and alternative 
routes to State certification or licensure programs), including 
distance education programs, whether or not they enroll students 
receiving Federal assistance under the HEA; and
    (ii) All other information consistent with section 205(b) of the 
HEA; and
    (2) Make the State report card information widely available to the 
general public by posting the State report card information on the 
State's Web site.
    (b) Reporting of information on teacher preparation program 
performance. In the State report card, beginning in April 2019 and 
annually thereafter, the State--
    (1) Must make meaningful differentiations in teacher preparation 
program performance using at least four performance levels--low-
performing teacher preparation program, at-risk teacher preparation 
program, effective teacher preparation program, and exceptional teacher 
preparation program--based on the indicators in Sec.  612.5 including, 
in significant part, employment outcomes for high-need schools and 
student learning outcomes;
    (2) May identify the performance level for a teacher preparation 
program as effective or higher quality only if it has satisfactory or 
higher student learning outcomes;
    (3) Must provide--
    (i) For each teacher preparation program--
    (A) Disaggregated data for each of the indicators identified 
pursuant to Sec.  612.5; and
    (B) The State's assurance that the teacher preparation program 
either is accredited by a specialized agency pursuant to Sec.  
612.5(a)(4)(i), or produces teacher candidates with content and 
pedagogical knowledge and quality clinical preparation who have met 
rigorous teacher candidate entry and exit qualifications pursuant to 
Sec.  612.5(a)(4)(ii);
    (ii) The State's weighting of the different indicators in Sec.  
612.5 for purposes of describing the State's assessment of program 
performance; and
    (iii) The State-level rewards or consequences associated with the 
designated performance levels;
    (4) In implementing paragraph (b)(1) through (3) of this section, 
except as provided in paragraphs (b)(4)(ii)(D) and (E) of this section, 
must ensure the performance of all of the State's teacher preparation 
programs are represented in the State report card by--
    (i) Annually reporting on the performance of each teacher 
preparation program that produces a total of 25 or more new teachers in 
a given reporting year (program size threshold), or, at a State's 
discretion, annually reporting on the performance of each teacher 
preparation program that produces fewer than 25 or more new teachers 
(lower program size threshold--e.g., 15 or 20)--in a given reporting 
year; and
    (ii) For any teacher preparation program that produces fewer than a 
program size threshold of 25 new teachers in a given reporting year (or 
for a State that chooses to use a lower program size threshold, for any 
teacher preparation program that produces fewer new teachers than the 
lower program size threshold), annually reporting on the program's 
performance by aggregating data under paragraph (b)(4)(ii)(A), (B), or 
(C) of this section in order to meet the program size threshold (or for 
a State that chooses a lower program size threshold, in order to meet 
the lower program size threshold) except as provided in paragraph 
(b)(4)(ii)(D) or (E) of this section.
    (A) The State may report on the program's performance by 
aggregating data that determine the program's performance with data for 
other teacher preparation programs that are operated by the same 
teacher preparation entity and are similar to or broader than the 
program in content.
    (B) The State may report on the program's performance by 
aggregating

[[Page 71888]]

data that determine the program's performance over multiple years for 
up to four years until the size threshold is met.
    (C) If a State cannot meet the program size threshold (or for a 
State that chooses a lower program size threshold, if the State cannot 
meet the lower program size threshold) by aggregating data under 
paragraph (b)(4)(ii)(A) or (B) of this section, it may aggregate data 
using a combination of the methods under both of these paragraphs.
    (D) The State is not required under this paragraph (b)(4)(ii) to 
report data on a particular teacher preparation program for a given 
reporting year if aggregation under this paragraph (b)(4)(ii) would not 
yield the program size threshold (or for a State that chooses a lower 
program size threshold, would not yield to the lower program size 
threshold) for that program.
    (E) The State also is not required under this paragraph (b)(4)(ii) 
to report data on a particular teacher preparation program if reporting 
these data would be inconsistent with Federal or State privacy and 
confidentiality laws and regulations; and
    (5) Must report on the procedures established by the State in 
consultation with a group of stakeholders, as described in paragraph 
(c)(1) of this section, and the State's examination of its data 
collection and reporting, as described in paragraph (c)(2) of this 
section, in the State report card submitted--
    (i) On April 1, 2018, and every four years thereafter; and
    (ii) At any other time that the State makes substantive changes to 
the weighting of the indicators or the procedures for assessing and 
reporting the performance of each teacher preparation program in the 
State described in paragraph (c) of this section.
    (c) Fair and equitable methods--(1) Consultation. Each State must 
establish in consultation with a representative group of stakeholders 
the procedures for assessing and reporting the performance of each 
teacher preparation program in the State under this section.
    (i) The representative group of stakeholders must include, at a 
minimum, representatives of leaders and faculty of traditional teacher 
preparation programs and alternative routes to State certification or 
licensure programs; students of teacher preparation programs; 
superintendents; school board members; elementary through secondary 
school leaders and instructional staff; elementary through secondary 
school students and their parents; IHEs that serve high proportions of 
low-income or minority students, or English language learners; 
advocates for English language learners and students with disabilities; 
and officials of the State's standards board or other appropriate 
standards body.
    (ii) The procedures for assessing and reporting the performance of 
each teacher preparation program in the State under this section must, 
at minimum, include--
    (A) The weighting of the indicators identified in Sec.  612.5 for 
establishing performance levels of teacher preparation programs as 
required by this section;
    (B) The aggregation of data pursuant to paragraph (b)(4)(ii) of 
this section;
    (C) State-level rewards or consequences associated with the 
designated performance levels; and
    (D) Appropriate opportunities for programs to challenge the 
accuracy of their performance data and classification of the program.
    (2) State examination of data collection and reporting. Each State 
must periodically examine the quality of the data collection and 
reporting activities it conducts pursuant to paragraph (b) of this 
section and Sec.  612.5, and, as appropriate, modify its data 
collection and reporting activities using the procedures described in 
this paragraph.
    (d) Inapplicability to certain insular areas. Paragraphs (b) and 
(c) of this section do not apply to American Samoa, the Commonwealth of 
the Northern Mariana Islands, the freely associated States of the 
Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, 
the Republic of Palau, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d)

Sec.  612.5  What indicators must a State use to report on teacher 
preparation program performance for purposes of the State report card?

    (a) For purposes of reporting under Sec.  612.4, a State must 
assess, for each teacher preparation program within its jurisdiction, 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills of new 
teachers from that program. These indicators of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills must include, at a minimum--
    (1) Student learning outcomes.
    (2) Employment outcomes. For purposes of assessing employment 
outcomes, a State may, in its discretion, assess traditional and 
alternative route teacher preparation programs differently based on 
whether there are differences in the programs that affect employment 
outcomes, provided that the varied assessments result in equivalent 
levels of accountability and reporting;
    (3) Survey outcomes; and
    (4) Whether the program--
    (i) Is accredited by a specialized accrediting agency recognized by 
the Secretary for accreditation of professional teacher education 
programs; or
    (ii) Consistent with Sec.  612.4(b)(3)(i)(B)--
    (A) Produces teacher candidates with content and pedagogical 
knowledge;
    (B) Produces teacher candidates with quality clinical preparation; 
and
    (C) Produces teacher candidates who have met rigorous teacher 
candidate entry and exit qualifications.
    (b) At a State's discretion, the indicators of academic content 
knowledge and teaching skills may include other indicators predictive 
of a teacher's effect on student performance, such as student survey 
results, provided that the State uses the same indicators for all 
teacher preparation programs in the State.
    (c) This section does not apply to American Samoa, the Commonwealth 
of the Northern Mariana Islands, the freely associated states of the 
Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, 
the Republic of Palau, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d)

Sec.  612.6  What must a State consider in identifying low-performing 
teacher preparation programs or at-risk teacher preparation programs, 
and what regulatory actions must a State take with respect to those 
programs identified as low-performing?

    (a)(1) In identifying low-performing or at-risk teacher preparation 
programs the State must use criteria that, at a minimum, include the 
indicators of academic content knowledge and teaching skills from Sec.  
612.5, including in significant part, student learning outcomes; and
    (2) Paragraph (a)(1) of this section does not apply to American 
Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the freely 
associated states of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the 
Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, Guam, and the 
United States Virgin Islands.
    (b) At a minimum, a State must provide technical assistance to low-
performing teacher preparation programs in the State to help them 
improve their performance in accordance with section 207(a) of the HEA. 
Technical assistance may include, but is not limited to: providing 
programs with information on the

[[Page 71889]]

specific indicators used to determine the program's rating (e.g., 
specific areas of weakness in student learning, job placement and 
retention, and new teacher and employer satisfaction); assisting 
programs to address the rigor of their entry and exit criteria; helping 
programs identify specific areas of curriculum or clinical experiences 
that correlate with gaps in graduates' preparation; helping identify 
potential research and other resources to assist program improvement 
(e.g., evidence of other successful interventions, other university 
faculty, other teacher preparation programs, nonprofits with expertise 
in educator preparation and teacher effectiveness improvement, 
accrediting organizations, or higher education associations); and 
sharing best practices from exemplary programs.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022d and 1022f)

Subpart C--Consequences of Withdrawal of State Approval or 
Financial Support


Sec.  612.7  What are the consequences for a low-performing teacher 
preparation program that loses the State's approval or the State's 
financial support?

    (a) Any teacher preparation program for which the State has 
withdrawn the State's approval or the State has terminated the State's 
financial support due to the State's identification of the program as a 
low-performing teacher preparation program--
    (1) Is ineligible for any funding for professional development 
activities awarded by the Department as of the date that the State 
withdrew its approval or terminated its financial support;
    (2) May not include any candidate accepted into the teacher 
preparation program or any candidate enrolled in the teacher 
preparation program who receives aid under title IV, HEA programs in 
the institution's teacher preparation program as of the date that the 
State withdrew its approval or terminated its financial support; and
    (3) Must provide transitional support, including remedial services, 
if necessary, to students enrolled at the institution at the time of 
termination of financial support or withdrawal of approval for a period 
of time that is not less than the period of time a student continues in 
the program but no more than 150 percent of the published program 
length.
    (b) Any institution administering a teacher preparation program 
that has lost State approval or financial support based on being 
identified as a low-performing teacher preparation program must--
    (1) Notify the Secretary of its loss of the State's approval or the 
State's financial support due to identification as low-performing by 
the State within 30 days of such designation;
    (2) Immediately notify each student who is enrolled in or accepted 
into the low-performing teacher preparation program and who receives 
title IV, HEA program funds that, commencing with the next payment 
period, the institution is no longer eligible to provide such funding 
to students enrolled in or accepted into the low-performing teacher 
preparation program; and
    (3) Disclose on its Web site and in promotional materials that it 
makes available to prospective students that the teacher preparation 
program has been identified as a low-performing teacher preparation 
program by the State and has lost the State's approval or the State's 
financial support, and that students accepted or enrolled in the low-
performing teacher preparation program may not receive title IV, HEA 
program funds.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022f)

Sec.  612.8  How does a low-performing teacher preparation program 
regain eligibility to accept or enroll students receiving Title IV, HEA 
program funds after loss of the State's approval or the State's 
financial support?

    (a) A low-performing teacher preparation program that has lost the 
State's approval or the State's financial support may regain its 
ability to accept and enroll students who receive title IV, HEA program 
funds upon demonstration to the Secretary under paragraph (b) of this 
section of--
    (1) Improved performance on the teacher preparation program 
performance criteria in Sec.  612.5 as determined by the State; and
    (2) Reinstatement of the State's approval or the State's financial 
support, or, if both were lost, the State's approval and the State's 
financial support.
    (b)(1) To regain eligibility to accept or enroll students receiving 
title IV, HEA funds in a teacher preparation program that was 
previously identified by the State as low-performing and that lost the 
State's approval or the State's financial support, the institution that 
offers the teacher preparation program must submit an application to 
the Secretary along with supporting documentation that will enable the 
Secretary to determine that the teacher preparation program previously 
identified by the State as low-performing has met the requirements 
under paragraph (a) of this section.
    (2) The Secretary evaluates an institution's application to 
participate in the title IV, HEA programs consistent with 34 CFR 600.20 
and determines if the institution is eligible to participate in these 
programs. In the event that an institution is not granted eligibility 
to participate in the title IV, HEA programs, that institution may 
submit additional evidence to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the 
Secretary that it is eligible to participate in these programs.

(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1022f)

PART 686--TEACHER EDUCATION ASSISTANCE FOR COLLEGE AND HIGHER 
EDUCATION (TEACH) GRANT PROGRAM

0
2. The authority citation for part 686 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  20 U.S.C. 1070g, et seq., unless otherwise noted.

0
3. Section 686.2 is amended by:
0
A. Redesignating paragraph (d) as paragraph (e).
0
B. Adding a new paragraph (d).
0
C. In newly redesignated paragraph (e):
0
i. Redesignating paragraphs (1) and (2) in the definition of ``Academic 
year or its equivalent for elementary and secondary schools (elementary 
or secondary academic year)'' as paragraphs (i) and (ii);
0
ii. Adding in alphabetical order definitions of ``Classification of 
Instructional Programs'' and ``Educational Service Agency'';
0
iii. Redesignating paragraphs (1) through (7) in the definition of 
``High-need field'' as paragraphs (i) through (vii), respectively;
0
iv. Adding in alphabetical order a definition of ``High-quality teacher 
preparation program'';
0
v. Redesignating paragraphs (1) through (3) in the definition of 
``Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR)'' as paragraphs (i) 
through (iii), respectively;
0
vi. Redesignating paragraphs (1) and (2) as paragraphs (i) and (ii) and 
paragraphs (2)(i) and (ii) as paragraphs (ii)(A) and (B), respectively, 
in the definition of ``Numeric equivalent'';
0
vii. Redesignating paragraphs (1) through (3) in the definition of 
``Post-baccalaureate program'' as paragraphs (i) through (iii), 
respectively;
0
viii. Adding in alphabetical order a definition for ``School or 
educational service agency serving low-income students (low-income 
school)'';
0
ix. Removing the definition of ``School serving low-income students 
(low-income school)'';

[[Page 71890]]

0
x. Revising the definitions of ``TEACH Grant-eligible institution'' and 
``TEACH Grant-eligible program'';
0
xi. Adding in alphabetical order a definition of ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) program''; and
0
xii. Revising the definition of ``Teacher preparation program''.
    The additions and revisions read as follows:


Sec.  686.2  Definitions.

* * * * *
    (d) Definitions for the following terms used in this part are in 
Title II Reporting System, 34 CFR part 612:
Effective Teacher Preparation Program
    (e) Other terms used in this part are defined as follows:
* * * * *
    Classification of instructional programs (CIP): A taxonomy of 
instructional program classifications and descriptions developed by the 
U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education 
Statistics.
    Educational service agency: A regional public multiservice agency 
authorized by State statute to develop, manage, and provide services or 
programs to LEAs, as defined in section 9101 of the Elementary and 
Secondary Education Act of l965, as amended.
* * * * *
    High-quality teacher preparation program: A teacher preparation 
program that--
    (i) For TEACH Grant program purposes in the 2020-2021 Title IV HEA 
award year, is classified by the State as effective or of higher 
quality under 34 CFR 612.4(b)in either or both the April 2019 and/or 
April 2020 State Report Cards and for TEACH Grant program purposes in 
the 2021-2022 Title IV HEA award year and subsequent award years, 
classified by the State as effective or of higher quality under 34 CFR 
612.4(b), beginning with the April 2019 State Report Card, for two out 
of the previous three years;
    (ii) Meets the exception from State reporting of teacher 
preparation program performance under 34 CFR 612.4(b)(4)(ii)(D) or (E); 
or
    (iii) Is a TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering, 
or mathematics (STEM) program at a TEACH Grant-eligible institution.
* * * * *
    School or educational service agency serving low-income students 
(low-income school): An elementary or secondary school or educational 
service agency that--
    (i) Is located within the area served by the LEA that is eligible 
for assistance pursuant to title I of the ESEA;
    (ii) Has been determined by the Secretary to be a school or 
educational service agency in which more than 30 percent of the 
school's or educational service agency's total enrollment is made up of 
children who qualify for services provided under title I of the ESEA; 
and
    (iii) Is listed in the Department's Annual Directory of Designated 
Low-Income Schools for Teacher Cancellation Benefits. The Secretary 
considers all elementary and secondary schools and educational service 
agencies operated by the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) in the 
Department of the Interior or operated on Indian reservations by Indian 
tribal groups under contract or grant with the BIE to qualify as 
schools or educational service agencies serving low-income students.
* * * * *
    TEACH Grant-eligible institution: An eligible institution as 
defined in 34 CFR part 600 that meets financial responsibility 
standards established in 34 CFR part 668, subpart L, or that qualifies 
under an alternative standard in 34 CFR 668.175 and--
    (i) Provides at least one high-quality teacher preparation program 
at the baccalaureate or master's degree level that also provides 
supervision and support services to teachers, or assists in the 
provision of services to teachers, such as--
    (A) Identifying and making available information on effective 
teaching skills or strategies;
    (B) Identifying and making available information on effective 
practices in the supervision and coaching of novice teachers; and
    (C) Mentoring focused on developing effective teaching skills and 
strategies;
    (ii) Provides a two-year program that is acceptable for full credit 
in a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM 
program offered by an institution described in paragraph (i) of this 
definition or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program offered by an 
institution described in paragraph (iii) of this definition, as 
demonstrated by the institution that provides the two year program;
    (iii) Provides a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program and has entered 
into an agreement with an institution described in paragraph (i) or 
(iv) of this definition to provide courses necessary for its students 
to begin a career in teaching; or
    (iv) Provides a high-quality teacher preparation program that is a 
post-baccalaureate program of study.
    TEACH Grant-eligible program: An eligible program, as defined in 34 
CFR 668.8, that meets paragraph (i) of the definition of ``high-quality 
teacher preparation program'' and that is designed to prepare an 
individual to teach as a highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field 
and leads to a baccalaureate or master's degree, or is a post-
baccalaureate program of study. A two-year program of study that is 
acceptable for full credit toward a baccalaureate degree in a high-
quality teacher preparation program is considered to be a program of 
study that leads to a baccalaureate degree.
    TEACH Grant-eligible science, technology, engineering, or 
mathematics (STEM) program: An eligible program, as defined in 34 CFR 
668.8, in one of the physical, life, or computer sciences; technology; 
engineering; or mathematics as identified by the Secretary, that, over 
the most recent three years for which data are available, has not been 
identified by the Secretary as having fewer than 60 percent of its 
TEACH Grant recipients completing at least one year of teaching that 
fulfills the service obligation pursuant to Sec.  686.40 within three 
years of completing the program. Each year, the Secretary will publish 
a list of STEM programs eligible to participate in the TEACH Grant 
program and will identify each eligible STEM program by its 
classification of instructional program (CIP) code.
* * * * *
    Teacher preparation program: A State-approved course of study, the 
completion of which signifies that an enrollee has met all of the 
State's educational or training requirements for initial certification 
or licensure to teach in the State's elementary or secondary schools. A 
teacher preparation program may be a traditional program or an 
alternative route to certification or licensure, as defined by the 
State. For purposes of a TEACH Grant, the program must be provided by 
an institution of higher education.
* * * * *
0
4. Section 686.3 is amended by:
0
A. In paragraph (a), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM 
program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''; and
0
B. Adding paragraph (c).
    The addition reads as follows:


Sec.  686.3  Duration of student eligibility.

* * * * *
    (c) An otherwise eligible student who received a TEACH Grant for 
enrollment in a TEACH Grant-eligible program or TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program is eligible to receive additional TEACH

[[Page 71891]]

Grants to complete that program, even if that program is no longer 
considered a TEACH Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program, not to exceed four Scheduled Awards for an undergraduate 
or post-baccalaureate student and up to two Scheduled Awards for a 
graduate student. An otherwise eligible student who received a TEACH 
Grant for enrollment in a program before July 1 of the year these 
proposed regulations become effective would remain eligible to receive 
additional TEACH Grants to complete that program even if the program 
the student enrolled in is not a TEACH Grant-eligible program under 
proposed Sec.  686.2(e).
* * * * *


Sec.  686.4  [Amended]

0
5. Section 686.4(a) is amended by adding the words ``or TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM programs'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
programs''.


Sec.  686.5  [Amended]

0
6. Section 686.5(b)(1) is amended by adding the words ``or TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program''.
0
7. Section 686.11 is amended by:
0
A. Revising paragraph (a)(1)(iii).
0
B. In paragraph (b)(3), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.
0
C. Adding paragraph (d).
    The revision and addition read as follows:


Sec.  686.11  Eligibility to receive a grant.

    (a) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (iii) Is enrolled in a TEACH Grant-eligible institution in a TEACH 
Grant-eligible program or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program; or is an 
otherwise eligible student who received a TEACH Grant and who is 
completing a program under Sec.  686.3(c);
* * * * *
    (d) Students who received a total and permanent disability 
discharge on a TEACH Grant agreement to serve or a title IV, HEA loan. 
If a student's previous TEACH Grant service obligation or title IV, HEA 
loan was discharged based on total and permanent disability, the 
student is eligible to receive a TEACH Grant if the student--
    (1) Obtains a certification from a physician that the student is 
able to engage in substantial gainful activity as defined in 34 CFR 
685.102(b);
    (2) Signs a statement acknowledging that neither the new service 
obligation for the TEACH Grant the student receives nor any previously 
discharged service agreement on which the grant recipient is required 
to resume repayment in accordance with paragraph (d)(3) of this section 
can be discharged in the future on the basis of any impairment present 
when the new grant is awarded, unless that impairment substantially 
deteriorates and the grant recipient applies for and meets the 
eligibility requirements for a discharge in accordance with 34 CFR 
685.213; and
    (3) For a situation in which the student receives a new TEACH Grant 
within three years of the date that any previous TEACH Grant service 
obligation or title IV loan was discharged due to a total and permanent 
disability in accordance with Sec.  686.42(b), 34 CFR 
685.213(b)(7)(i)(B), 34 CFR 674.61(b)(6)(i)(B), or 34 CFR 
682.402(c)(6)(i)(B), acknowledges that he or she is once again subject 
to the terms of the previously discharged TEACH Grant agreement to 
serve in accordance with Sec.  686.42(b)(5) before receiving the new 
grant or resumes repayment on the previously discharged loan in 
accordance with 34 CFR 685.213(b)(7), 674.61(b)(6), or 682.402(c)(6).
* * * * *
0
8. Section 686.12 is amended by:
0
A. In paragraph (b) introductory text, adding the words ``or TEACH 
Grant-eligible STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program'';
0
B. In paragraph (b)(1)(i), adding the words ``or a low-income 
educational service agency'' after the word ``school'';
0
C. In paragraph (b)(2), adding the words ``or educational service 
agency'' after the word ``school'';
0
D. In paragraph (c)(1), adding the words ``or the TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''; and
0
E. Revising paragraph (d).
    The revision reads as follows:


Sec.  686.12  Agreement to serve.

* * * * *
    (d) Majoring and serving in a high-need field. In order for a grant 
recipient's teaching service in a high-need field listed in the 
Nationwide List to count toward satisfying the recipient's service 
obligation, the high-need field in which he or she prepared to teach 
must be listed in the Nationwide List for the State in which the grant 
recipient begins teaching in that field--
    (1) At the time the grant recipient begins teaching in that field, 
even if that field subsequently loses its high-need designation for 
that State; or
    (2) For teaching service performed on or after July 1, 2010, at the 
time the grant recipient begins teaching in that field or when the 
grant recipient signed the agreement to serve or received the TEACH 
Grant, even if that field subsequently loses its high-need designation 
for that State before the grant recipient.
* * * * *


Sec.  686.31  [Amended]

0
9. Section 686.31 is amended by:
0
A. In paragraph (a)(4), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''; and
0
B. In paragraph (b)(2), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.


Sec.  686.32  [Amended]

0
10. Section 686.32 is amended by:
0
A. In paragraph (a)(3)(ii), adding the words ``and low-income 
educational service agencies'' after the word ``schools'';
0
B. In paragraph (a)(3)(iii)(B), adding the words ``or received the 
TEACH Grant'' after the words ``that field'';
0
C. In paragraph (c)(2), adding the words ``or the TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program'';
0
D. In paragraph (c)(3), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program'';
0
E. In paragraph (c)(4)(i), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program'';
0
F. In paragraph (c)(4)(iii), adding the words ``and low-income 
educational service agencies'' after the word ``schools'';
0
G. In paragraph (c)(4)(iv)(B), adding the words ``or when the grant 
recipient signed the agreement to serve or received the TEACH Grant'' 
after the words ``that field''; and
0
H. In paragraph (c)(4)(v), adding the words ``or for a low-income 
educational service agency'' after the words ``low-income school''.


Sec.  686.35  [Amended]

0
11. Section 686.35 is amended by:
0
A. In paragraph (a)(2)(i), adding the words ``or the TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program''; and
0
B. In paragraph (b), adding the words ``or the TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.

[[Page 71892]]

Sec.  686.37  [Amended]

0
12. Section 686.37(a)(1) is amended by removing the citation 
``Sec. Sec.  686.11'' and adding in its place the citation ``Sec. Sec.  
686.3(c), 686.11,''.
0
13. Section 686.40 is amended by revising paragraphs (b) and (f) to 
read as follows:


Sec.  686.40  Documenting the service obligation.

* * * * *
    (b) If a grant recipient is performing full-time teaching service 
in accordance with the agreement to serve, or agreements to serve if 
more than one agreement exists, the grant recipient must, upon 
completion of each of the four required elementary or secondary 
academic years of teaching service, provide to the Secretary 
documentation of that teaching service on a form approved by the 
Secretary and certified by the chief administrative officer of the 
school or educational service agency in which the grant recipient is 
teaching. The documentation must show that the grant recipient is 
teaching in a low-income school or low-income educational service 
agency. If the school or educational service agency at which the grant 
recipient is employed meets the requirements of a low-income school or 
low-income educational service agency in the first year of the grant 
recipient's four elementary or secondary academic years of teaching and 
the school or educational service agency fails to meet those 
requirements in subsequent years, those subsequent years of teaching 
qualify for purposes of this section for that recipient.
* * * * *
    (f) A grant recipient who taught in more than one qualifying school 
or more than one qualifying educational service agency during an 
elementary or secondary academic year and demonstrates that the 
combined teaching service was the equivalent of full-time, as supported 
by the certification of one or more of the chief administrative 
officers of the schools or educational service agencies involved, is 
considered to have completed one elementary or secondary academic year 
of qualifying teaching.
* * * * *


Sec.  686.41  [Amended]

0
14. In Sec.  686.41, paragraph (a)(1) introductory text is amended by 
adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program'' after the 
words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.
0
15. Section 686.42 is amended by:
0
A. Revising paragraph (b); and
0
B. In paragraph (c)(1), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.
    The revision reads as follows:


Sec.  686.42  Discharge of agreement to serve.

* * * * *
    (b) Total and permanent disability. (1) A grant recipient's 
agreement to serve is discharged if the recipient becomes totally and 
permanently disabled, as defined in 34 CFR 682.200(b), and the grant 
recipient applies for and satisfies the eligibility requirements for a 
total and permanent disability discharge in accordance with 34 CFR 
685.213.
    (2) If at any time the Secretary determines that the grant 
recipient does not meet the requirements of the three-year period 
following the discharge in 34 CFR 685.213(b)(7), the Secretary will 
notify the grant recipient that the grant recipient's obligation to 
satisfy the terms of the agreement to serve is reinstated.
    (3) The Secretary's notification under paragraph (b)(2) of this 
section will--
    (i) Include the reason or reasons for reinstatement;
    (ii) Provide information on how the grant recipient may contact the 
Secretary if the grant recipient has questions about the reinstatement 
or believes that the agreement to serve was reinstated based on 
incorrect information;
    (iii) Inform the grant recipient that interest accrual will resume 
on TEACH Grant disbursements made prior to the date of the discharge; 
and
    (iv) Inform the TEACH Grant recipient that he or she must satisfy 
the service obligation within the portion of the eight-year period that 
remained after the date of the discharge.
* * * * *
0
16. Section 686.43 is amended by:
0
A. Revising paragraph (a)(1);
0
B. In paragraphs (a)(2) and (a)(3) introductory text, adding the words 
``or the TEACH Grant-eligible STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH 
Grant-eligible program'';
0
C. In paragraph (a)(3)(ii), adding the words ``or a TEACH Grant-
eligible STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible 
program''; and
0
D. In paragraph (a)(5), adding the words ``or the TEACH Grant-eligible 
STEM program'' after the words ``TEACH Grant-eligible program''.
    The revision reads as follows:


Sec.  686.43  Obligation to repay the grant.

    (a) * * *
    (1) The grant recipient, regardless of enrollment status, requests 
that the TEACH Grant be converted into a Federal Direct Unsubsidized 
Loan because he or she has decided not to teach in a qualified school 
or educational service agency, or not to teach in a high-need field, or 
for any other reason;
* * * * *

[FR Doc. 2014-28218 Filed 12-2-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P