Scottsdale honors new National Board teachers - AZEdNews
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Scottsdale honors new National Board teachers

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  • Becky Kelbaugh/Scottsdale Unified School District

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (December 16, 2013) National Board Certification is one of the highest achievements in the teaching profession. Recently, 13 Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) teachers earned this credential by completing the rigorous National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) process, and one teacher renewed the credential. SUSD now has 71 board-certified teachers.

The newly certified teachers are Rachelle Anderson, Chaparral; Kitty Beder, Chaparral; Andrea Dersch, Cheyenne; Tammy Dias, Saguaro; Reno Edgington, Desert Mountain; Elizabeth Griffin, Saguaro; Susan J. Leonard, Ingleside; Rachel Lindsay, Laguna; Kimberly Mayorga, Arcadia; Tristin Miller, Cocopah; Stacey Shcolnik, Chaparral; Ashley Sorice, Yavapai; and Patricia Vassaux, Anasazi. Susan Spickler, Mohave, renewed her credential.  These teachers will be recognized at the February 11, 2014 Governing Board meeting.

“We are extremely proud of our teachers who have pursued this rigorous professional development to further their knowledge and practice of teaching and learning. Since 2004, SUSD has gone from having nine NBCT to 71. This is a great accomplishment,” said Dr. Andi Fourlis, assistant superintendent of Teaching and Learning.

According to the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) website, NBCT is an advanced teaching credential that signifies excellence and demonstrates that a teacher has met rigorous standards through intensive study, self-assessment and evaluation. It identifies, recognizes and rewards accomplished teachers who meet high standards based on what teachers should know and be able to do. Developed by the NBPTS, NBCT strengthens and reaffirms teaching strategies, adds credibility to the teaching profession and represents the profession’s highest standards.

To be eligible for the National Board Certification, teachers must have three years of teaching experience, a valid teaching license and a bachelor’s degree. After teachers have become eligible, they take a Pre-Candidacy class to prepare for the certification process. Teachers pursue candidacy through Career Ladder Cohorts to support them through the process, which takes one to three years depending on the pathway a teacher chooses.

The Scottsdale Unified School District Foundation annually grants money to SUSD teachers who have submitted plans for pursuing National Board Certification. Through an application process, funds are allocated for coaching and workshops from the AZ K-12 Center through the Bill and Sue Jenkins National Board Certification Educator Scholarship Program, as well as federal funding provided to the state Department of Education.

For more information about NBCT, please visit the National Board Certification folder on the Career Ladder web page and the NBPTS website at

 Scottsdale Unified School District, where we Engage, Educate and Empower Every Student, Every Day. The District and 15 schools have earned the state’s highest A-F Achievement Profile grade – A. All Scottsdale schools are graded as A, B, or C by the Arizona Department of Education. For more information about Scottsdale Unified schools, please visit