Brittany Irvin, a language arts teacher at Knox County Middle School, is the latest National Board certified teacher in the Knox County Schools. She is one of 316 Kentucky teachers who received certification this year.
National Board certification is the teaching profession’s highest teaching credential. The certification, consisting of compiling a teaching portfolio reflecting personal teaching styles and student learning, can take one to three years to complete.
Irvin says that the process was work intensive but definitely a worthwhile effort.
“The most rigorous part of the process included intense reflection not only on the structure of specific lessons, but also on the continued success of individual students”, stated Irvin.
“As I examined student responses to the lessons I produced, I discovered growth areas for myself as well as my students. I found this to be the most rewarding part of the certification process.”
Irvin, who is in her 7th year of teaching, plans to change some of her teaching styles as a result of the application’s reflection process.
“I immediately realized that my questioning techniques were not as purposeful as I would have liked, and limited students’ participation”, Irvin said. “I sought out researched, varied methods to make my questioning more effective and implemented them in every day instruction.”
Irvin credits growth opportunities offered by the school district for her success in obtaining national certification.
“I will say that I felt better prepared for many of the requirements because of the focused professional development provided by the county”, she said.
Irvin is one of seven National Board certified teachers in Knox County. Others include Lana Sowders, Dena Cole, April Helton, April Jones, Cathy Rhoden, and Rosemary Revoir.
“The district is very proud of Ms. Irvin”, said assistant superintendent Marion Sowders. “This is a tremendous accomplishment. The number of nationally certified teachers in Knox County continues to grow.”
The certification experience confirmed for Irvin that teaching is an ongoing, learning process. “In other words, if I am going to continue to teach, I must continue to learn”, stated Irvin.
Teachers who are interested in National Board certification may visit the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board website for more information at http://www.kyepsb.net/certification/nationalboard.asp.