Educational Institutions

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, Inc.

  • Arlington, VA

Mission Statement

The vision of NBPTS is that every student has great teachers and every school has great leaders. The mission of NBPTS is to advance student learning and achievement by establishing the definitive standards and systems for certifying accomplished educators, providing programs and advocating policies that support excellence in teaching and leading, and engaging National Board certified teachers and leaders in that process.

Main Programs

  1. Program
Service Areas



NBPTS serves teachers nationwide by providing a national, voluntary assessment of accomplished teaching practice.

ruling year


Principal Officer since 2011


Dr. Ronald Thorpe



Effective Teaching, Education, Teaching, Standards, Student Achievement, Student Learning, Professional Development

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Also Known As

NBPTS / National Board





Physical Address

1525 Wilson Boulevard

Arlington, VA 22209 2411


Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Elementary, Secondary Ed (B20)

Primary/Elementary Schools (B24)

Secondary/High School (B25)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?


Self-reported by organization

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards is rooted in the belief that the single most important action this country can take to improve schools and student learning is to strengthen teaching. For a quarter-century, NBPTS has set the barfor what it means to be a great teacher, and has provided the standards and framework to achieve the mark of distinction: the National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT).
Since 1994, when the first cohort of teachers tested their teaching practice against nationally validated and reliable assessments, 97,000 teachers have achieved National Board Certification. Nearly 100,000 strong in 2012, these teachers prepare America’s diverse student population with the necessary skills to be competent members of the 21st century workforce.


Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1


The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards is working with a great sense of urgency to ensure that every child in America has a great teacher leading them to academic success. Today there are nearly 100,000 National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs) in our nation’s schools providing powerful leadership for preK-12 education. The future, however, must find us with 10 times that number and probably many more. 
The National Board seeks to ensure that all teachers – regardless of undergraduate institution, subject area, geography, or financial ability – can pursue and achieve National Board Certification. In a bold step to forge teaching into a true profession, NBPTS seeks to do what other great professions have done in recognizing professionals who becomemasters at their craft.
Teachers routinely remark on the positive impact of National Board Certification on their teaching practice and student learning. And principals are also noticing the revolutionary effect that National Board process can have on a school culture and increases in student achievement. To this end, NBPTS offers a variety of products and services to support individual teachers, schools and districts in pursuit of advanced certification.
Students cannot thrive without successive years of an effective teacher. The role of the school principal in ensuring that there is an effective teacher in every classroom cannot be underestimated. Research shows that leadership is the second key factor – behind a highly effective teaching – that influences student achievement. NBPTS seeks to link leadership and learning in innovative ways that advance principal skills and more creatively deploy the expertise of NBCTs. NBPTS is in the process of pilot testing National Board Certification for principals that will go to market in 2014. Together, National Board Certified teachers and principals can unify in a relentless mission to implement effective instructional practice and advance student performance in every school in America.In developing a true profession, exposure to expert teaching practice cannot happen once a teacher lands a job in a school. With deliberate speed in 2012, NBPTS is developing Accomplished Teaching, Learning, and Schools (ATLAS) that will be used to enable aspiring and early-career teachers to accelerate their development of instructional expertise to improve learning. ATLAS will be a searchable database developed, maintained, and distributed by NBPTS consisting of 15-minute videos and associated reflective analyses (referred to as “cases”) that are created by NBCTs as part of the certification process. This project focuses on building and implementing ATLAS to support the preparation and early-career development of teachers for primary initial use in institutions of higher education. Ultimately, ATLAS will contain thousands of cases that address all areas of the curriculum and every developmental level of preK-12 education, bringing models of proven accomplished practice to novice teachers in large numbers, at low cost, and in a way that is sustainable.

Given the current national policy focus on teacher evaluation, NBPTS has been contacted by several parties interested in access to ATLAS videos and written commentaries created by National Board Certified Teachers to use as exemplars in the calibration of individuals who perform teacher observations. NBPTS is evaluating requests on a case-by-case basis; when mutually beneficial, NBPTS is developing custom solutions on delivery options conceptualized for ATLAS.



Population(s) Served


Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)



Service Areas



NBPTS serves teachers nationwide by providing a national, voluntary assessment of accomplished teaching practice.

Funding Needs

NBPTS is proud of the accomplishments of the 97,000 National Board Certified Teachers who are upholding high and rigorous professional teaching standards to ensure that their students reach their full academic potential. We are very aware of our potential to accelerate student learning and transform the teaching profession if school principals could staff their schools with scores of National Board Certified Teachers. New teachers and principals enter the profession seeking to make a difference in the lives of children. It is our ambition to lead the way for improved success by customizing programs that infuse National Board processes into preparation and mentoring of pre-service and early-career teachers. Every child regardless of zip code needs to have excellent teachers in an excellent school from the first day they enter a classroom until they walk down the aisle at graduation. Nothing less is acceptable for our nation’s children.

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Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.


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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, Inc.



Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2014, 2013 and 2012
  • Board Chair, Board Co-Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Principal Officer

Dr. Ronald Thorpe


Ronald Thorpe joined NBPTS in early December 2011. Ronaldcomes to NBPTS from WNET where he served as Vice President and Director of Education since July 2003. At WNET he was responsible for work related to a Ready to Teach grant from the U.S. Department of Education, a variety of new online resources for New York State schools, and the annual Celebration of Teaching and Learning, a two-day professional development conference serving more than 8,000 teachers and administrators each year. Between 1990 and 2003, Dr. Thorpeserved at the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation (Program Officer), the Rhode Island Foundation (Senior Vice President for Program), and the Wallace Foundation (Senior Program Officer). He began his career as a teacher of Latin and Greek and Assistant to the Headmaster at Phillips Academy (1974-1980) and then as Dean of Faculty and Chief Academic Officer at Kingswood-Oxford School (1982-1990). Throughout his career, he has focused on professional development of teachers. A graduate of Harvard College, Thorpe earned his Ed.M. and Administration, Planning and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is the author of numerous articles and commentaries on education, technology, and philanthropy, and is the editor of the First Year asPrincipal.

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"National Board Certification is heralded as the “gold standard” for teaching excellence. NBPTS has nearly 100,000 National Board Certified Teachers in the U.S. "National board certification is synonymous with great teaching. While our nation is focused on the need for the highest quality teachers, board certification truly is the gold standard," said Ronald Thorpe, president and CEO of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards."



Governor Bob Wise

Alliance for Excellence in Education


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Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?



Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?