Hirkaler receives national teaching certification

| 29 Sep 2011 | 02:27

VERNON — Lisa Hirkaler, an art teacher at Vernon Township High School, has achieved National Board Certification after meeting the nation’s highest teaching standards. National Board certification is a voluntary assessment program designed to recognize and reward great teachers — and make them better, according to information from the certification board. While state licensing systems set basic requirements to teach in each state, National Board certified teachers have demonstrated advanced teaching knowledge, skills and practices. Certification is achieved through a rigorous, performance-based assessment that typically takes one to three years to complete. As part of the process, teachers build a portfolio that includes student work samples, assignments, videotapes and a thorough analysis of their classroom teaching. Additionally, teachers are assessed on their knowledge of the subjects they teach. National Board certified teachers consistently receive top teaching honors while representing less than 2 percent of the nation’s teaching population. All 50 states, the District of Columbia and more than 700 local school districts recognize National Board certification as a mark of distinction and excellence.