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Pennsylvania's Equitable Access to Excellent Educators

The U.S. Department of Education (USDE) required each state to submit a state plan[1] by June 1, 2015.  In guidance provided by the USDE, "a state's plan must describe the steps it will take to ensure that "poor and minority children are not taught at higher rates than other children by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers and the measures that it will use to evaluate and publicly report on its progress with respect to such steps."  (emphasis added)

On September 10, the Department announced the approval of 16 states' plans to ensure equitable access to excellent educators, which included Pennsylvania's Equitable Access to Excellent Educators for All Children state plan.  A copy of Pennsylvania's approved state plan is available at

Work groups, consisting of stakeholders and representatives from teacher preparation entities, high poverty and high minority schools, education organizations and associations, will be convened to develop plans for implementing activities and strategies identified above.  Additionally, a resource account ( is available for stakeholders, parents, educators, and others to submit recommendations and feedback on the implementation of Pennsylvania's equitable access state plan. 

Pennsylvania's Theory of Action to Ensure Equitable Access to Excellent Educators for All Children.  Pennsylvania's theory of action is built around four strategies, starting with strategically improving the management of Pennsylvania's human capital in our schools—especially in the poorest and highest minority schools--to enable them to recruit, hire, retain and support a pool of highly effective, qualified, fully certified teachers, principals and other school staff.  Implementation of all strategies will be monitored to identify which are more effective in mitigating Pennsylvania's equity gaps; progress will be reported first to Pennsylvania's equity stakeholders and second to the public; and adjustments will be made if desired results are not achieved.  

Theory of Action Graph 

Activities will focus on eliminating the underlying causes that result in Pennsylvania's eight equity gaps; a ninth gap dedicated to incomplete, inadequate or data that cannot be readily accessed.  The schematic below depicts Pennsylvania's equity gaps, root causes, and activities.  A complete list of the equity gaps follows. 

schematic of PA equity gaps root cases and activities  

 [1] The plan is required by section 1111(b)(8)(C) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA).