Polk County Schools is one of 81 districts across the nation selected for recognition by The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards for its high percentage of teachers with National Board certification.

The NBPTS program honors school districts across the country that work hard to promote student learning through accomplished teaching. The 81 school systems chosen as National Board Accomplished Districts have at least 20 percent of their teachers with National Board certification, encouraging teachers to be their best and effectively driving student learning.

Ronette Dill, Polk County Schools Director of Curriculum and Instruction, said all Polk County teachers are urged to consider completing the National Board Certification process as soon as they complete the Beginning Teacher Support Program.

Dill said Polk County Middle School assistant principal Nikki Honeycutt provides local support, meeting with individual teachers to help guide them through the National Board process. District teachers can also attend support sessions offered by the Western Region Education Service Alliance.

“The National Board process is the best professional development a teacher can have as it creates rigorous opportunities for reflective practitioners and allows teachers to showcase their abilities in the classroom,” Honeycutt said.

“It is the most respected certification in education, and in North Carolina, it allows teachers to earn a 12 percent pay increase. National Board teachers are highly sought after for their proven educational expertise and are often recruited as instructional leaders within local, state and national platforms.”

Accomplished Districts will be recognized with an award for the district office and unique celebrations for the NBCTs in those districts. Of the 81 districts recognized, 21 of those are in North Carolina.

“High quality teaching is the most important in-school factor impacting student learning,” said Peggy Brookins, a National Board Certified Teacher and the president and CEO of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. “The districts that measured up to be included in the National Board Accomplished District program understand the value of accomplished teaching and support teachers to be their best.

“We encourage state and district leaders to support National Board certification because NBCTs have a measurable impact on student learning – and what parent anywhere doesn’t want the best possible teacher for their children?”