Two middle school teachers earn national board certification

Two middle school teachers earn national board certification

Two Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) middle school teachers – Monica Derencin and Erin Gartland – recently joined the ranks of accomplished teachers nationwide who achieved national certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS).

Both teachers completed a yearlong performance-based assessment series to become National Board Certified Teachers, according to a Dec. 18 release by the NBPTS. They join 37 other Charles County Public Schools teachers who hold current national certification status.

Derencin is a language arts teacher at Milton M. Somers Middle School and earned her certificate in the area of English language arts/adolescence and young adulthood. She has been teaching language arts at Somers for the past nine years and works with eighth-grade students. Derencin has a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from McDaniel College.

Gartland is a science teacher at Somers and earned her certification in the area of science/early adolescence. She has been teaching at Somers for the past eight school years and teaches eighth grade physical science. Gartland has a bachelor’s degree in secondary education – biology/group science from Western Michigan University, and a master’s degree in education/instructional technology from Walden University.

National Board Certified Teachers must complete a rigorous review of their skills and work, which includes teacher portfolios, student work samples, videotapes, and thorough analysis of the candidates’ classroom teaching and student learning. Teachers also complete a series of written exercises that probe the depth of their subject-matter knowledge and their understanding of how to teach that material to students.

These teachers join more than 4,000 teachers nationwide who were certified in 2013. Certification is valid for 10 years, after which a teacher may seek renewal. Maryland has 2,575 teachers who are nationally certified and is one of the top 10 states with the highest participation in the certification process.

By achieving National Board Certification, Charles County teachers are eligible for a $4,500 stipend added to their annual salary as long as they maintain their National Board Certification status.

Only teachers with a standard or advanced professional certificate who have a minimum of three years successful teaching experience are eligible to apply for National Board Certification. Information about the application process is available on the NBPTS website at

Charles County Public Schools provides 26,500 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 35 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator (students), or Connie W. Armstead, Section 504 Coordinator (employees/adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, Maryland 20646; (301) 932-6610/870-3814. For special accommodations call (301) 934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.


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