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Teachers without education degrees are better than teachers with them.

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Teachers without education degrees are better than teachers with them.

Old 06-15-08, 08:40 AM
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Teachers without education degrees are better than teachers with them.

This verifies what I've said before in other threads. Education would be improved if teachers were chosen based on their academic abilities instead of on their having a degree in education. I think the education major should be abolished.

Since this program has been very successful at helping students, I'm not surprised that the teachers' unions are opposed to it.


http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1213...w_and_outlooks

Amazing Teacher Facts

June 14, 2008; Page A10

This month 3,700 recent college grads will begin Teach for America's five-week boot camp, before heading off for two-year stints at the nation's worst public schools. These young men and women were chosen from almost 25,000 applicants, hailing from our most selective colleges. Eleven per cent of Yale's senior class, 9% of Harvard's and 10% of Georgetown's applied for a job whose salary ranges from $25,000 (in rural South Dakota) to $44,000 (in New York City).

Hang on a second.

Unions keep saying the best people won't go into teaching unless we pay them what doctors and lawyers and CEOs make. Not only are Teach for America salaries significantly lower than what J.P. Morgan might offer, but these individuals go to some very rough classrooms. What's going on?

It seems that Teach for America offers smart young people something even better than money – the chance to avoid the vast education bureaucracy. Participants need only pass academic muster and attend the summer training before entering a classroom. If they took the traditional route into teaching, they would have to endure years of "education" courses to be certified.

The American Federation of Teachers commonly derides Teach for America as a "band-aid." One of its arguments is that the program only lasts two years, barely enough time, they say, to get a handle on managing a classroom. However, it turns out that two-thirds of its grads stay in the education field, sometimes as teachers, but also as principals or policy makers.

More importantly, it doesn't matter that they are only in the classroom a short time, at least according to a recent Urban Institute study. Here's the gist: "On average, high school students taught by TFA corps members performed significantly better on state-required end-of-course exams, especially in math and science, than peers taught by far more experienced instructors. The TFA teachers' effect on student achievement in core classroom subjects was nearly three times the effect of teachers with three or more years of experience."

Jane Hannaway, one of the study's co-authors, says Teach for America participants may be more motivated than their traditional teacher peers. Second, they may receive better support during their experience. But, above all, Teach for America volunteers tend to have much better academic qualifications. They come from more competitive schools and they know more about the subjects they teach. Ms. Hannaway notes, "Students are better off being exposed to teachers with a high level of skill."

The strong performance in math and science seems to confirm that the more specialized the knowledge, the more important it is that teachers be well versed in it. (Imagine that.) No amount of time in front of a classroom will make you understand advanced algebra better.

Teach for America was pleased, but not exactly shocked, by these results. "We have always been a data-driven organization," says spokesman Amy Rabinowitz. "We have a selection model we've refined over the years." The organization figures out which teachers have been most successful in improving student performance and then seeks applicants with similar qualities. "It's mostly a record of high academic achievement and leadership in extracurricular activities."

Sounds like the way the private sector hires. Don't tell the teachers unions.

Last edited by grundle; 06-15-08 at 08:55 AM.
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Old 06-15-08, 08:50 AM
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As a teacher, this is probably the only area under the sun in which I agree wholeheartedly with grundle. As a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, it was harder for me to become certified in New York State than if I had graduated from a 3rd tier state university.

Of course, the article has other agendas as well, but I'll pretend those don't exist just to be in alignment with grundle just this once.
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Old 06-15-08, 08:56 AM
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I'm certain I speak for the entire forum is welcoming back yet another grundle poll.

He gives so many options.

Everything is not black or white with grundle.
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Old 06-15-08, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by grundle
Sounds like the way the private sector hires. Don't tell the teachers unions.
I think you need to familiarize yourself more with Teach for America and AmeriCorps.
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Old 06-15-08, 11:18 AM
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I agree that at the high school level, a teacher should have a degree in which he or she teaches. However, I also believe a teaching candidate needs a lot of training in the form of apprenticeship and mentoring - not theory classes. They need a variety of real world experience in real classrooms with real students and teachers as mentors. I also believe the current credentialing process requires the candidate to jump through a lot of unnecessary "hoops".

I'm curious how much support and mentoring a Teach for America Teacher receives while he or she is in the classroom. I think this could be the key in addition to having the right degree. For many first and second year teachers, they're left to sink or swim on their own with little or no continued support. It becomes basic survival instead of teaching. It's no wonder over half of teachers are out of the profession after five years.
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Old 06-15-08, 11:57 AM
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Sounds like TFA Teachers are best suited for inner-city areas which have more conflict and violence.
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Old 06-15-08, 12:11 PM
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So they are finding that the program yields pretty good results when they are taking only the top 15% of applicants? Shocking.

Having a degree in the field that you teach is certainly very desirable, especially in mathematics and the sciences. But the reality is that there simply are not enough college graduates in those fields that want to become teachers to fill all of the needed teaching positions in this country.

The high teacher-turnover rate feeds the problem, creating a self-sustaining cycle. Many teachers leave the field within the first few years creating a large number of vacancies that there are not enough qualified candidates to fill, which puts a large number of unqualified people in those positions, which results in a high turnover, and on and on.
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Old 06-15-08, 02:25 PM
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as much as I agree that teachers need to be better, it's the curriculum that needs to get better. and parents need to take responsibility in making sure their kids learn what they need to learn to get into college and be lifelong learners. simply relying on teachers to do that for you isn't very smart.
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Old 06-15-08, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by jmaxlow
So they are finding that the program yields pretty good results when they are taking only the top 15% of applicants? Shocking.
This whole thread is retarded. Projecting grundle's "results" based off of the Teach for America program onto the general population of teachers is impossible. I knew several people in the program and money had nothing to do with it: these people generally wanted to make a difference in kid's lives. Their major(s) had nothing to do with it.

Also, when you've got a graduate coming from Yale or any such Ivy League school, there's a pretty safe bet that part of their living expenses are being subsidized by their parents.
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Old 06-15-08, 03:06 PM
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I think this article ignores too many aspects of our education system to be really accurate. But I do agree that our current certification process should be changed.

All the people that went into the education program at my school were usually the least intelligent and driven. At least the ones I knew. None of them were really passionate about teaching, or the subjects they were going to teach.
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Old 06-15-08, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by The Bus
This whole thread is retarded.
Agreed. Sorry, grundle. For once, you've overreached.
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Old 06-15-08, 11:14 PM
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I believe it.

This isn't a knock on current teachers, it is illuminating an ADDITIONAL source of teachers, which is needed in most parts of the country. I have a friend who went to a top tier undergrad, 4.0, bilingual, sparkling experience working with children and teaching....and it took her over a year to get the 'correct' paperwork to teach in a school in another state.

The pushback is from the teacher's union and people afraid of competition.....which pretty much means everyone in the union.
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Old 06-16-08, 12:06 AM
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I'm not sure how useful it is to compare people who want to teach for a couple of years right after they graduate from school and then move on to something else and people who want to make a career of teaching.
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Old 06-16-08, 07:23 AM
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Ideally, teachers would both be educated in the subjects they teach and be trained in proper pedagogical techniques, classroom management, etc., but that is a lot of education to expect from someone who gets paid as little as elementary and secondary ed teachers. But looking back on my educational experiences, the best teachers were those who instilled a love of learning, not those who could conjugate French verbs at the drop of a hat. Most of what I learned as a child I learned on my own, using the tools and techniques presented to me by my teachers, not by what they lectured or drilled in a classroom.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:21 AM
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Although I've poked a little fun at grundle, I tend to agree with him somewhat.

I feel the only education course that should be taught is practice teaching.

I had only a course in secondary education & practice teaching. On second thought - maybe that's the reason I only taught one semester.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:21 AM
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I should throw out there it is tough to do all of that when teachers are being forced to teach to a test, and the resources are left up to the teacher to buy if they "need" them.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by pedagogue
I should throw out there it is tough to do all of that when teachers are being forced to teach to a test, and the resources are left up to the teacher to buy if they "need" them.
...and have to deal with psycho parents who think their little Johnny can do-no-wrong and the teacher can do-no-right.

- - - - - - -
As for "teaching to a test" I never bought into that argument. And I've never seen it in the education of any of my 6 kids. The capital of Nebraska is Lincoln whether or not it is on a standardized test. Water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit at sea level.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by dork
Agreed. Sorry, grundle. For once, you've overreached.

That would be a description for just about all a grundle thread, just replace once with as usual.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:38 AM
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I had more problems with the Vice Principal than I did with parents.

Before my short stint as a teacher, I was the illusion that the teacher gave the grades.
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Old 06-16-08, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by classicman2
I had more problems with the Vice Principal than I did with parents.

Before my short stint as a teacher, I was the illusion that the teacher gave the grades.
I have heard that teaching is one of the worst jobs in as far as the administration can make your life hell or great.
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Old 06-16-08, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by sracer
As for "teaching to a test" I never bought into that argument. And I've never seen it in the education of any of my 6 kids. The capital of Nebraska is Lincoln whether or not it is on a standardized test. Water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit at sea level.
That's not what pedagogue was talking about.
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Old 06-16-08, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by wewantflair
As a teacher, this is probably the only area under the sun in which I agree wholeheartedly with grundle. As a graduate of Johns Hopkins University, it was harder for me to become certified in New York State than if I had graduated from a 3rd tier state university.
That's probably because we Hopkins grads get little respect unless we're Lacrosse players as well.

<--- MS from Whiting School of Engineering, Homewood Campus, 2005
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Old 06-16-08, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by The Bus
That's not what pedagogue was talking about.
Yes he is. The "teaching to the test" claim is that teachers tailor what is taught and how it is taught so that students are prepared to do better on standardized tests. That includes using problem solving approaches that are compatible and consistent with the ones expected on those standardized tests.

If that isn't "teaching to the test" what is it?
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Old 06-16-08, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by sracer
...and have to deal with psycho parents who think their little Johnny can do-no-wrong and the teacher can do-no-right.
Yeah, parents are fun....which is why I'll never teach at that level.

Originally Posted by sracer
As for "teaching to a test" I never bought into that argument. And I've never seen it in the education of any of my 6 kids. The capital of Nebraska is Lincoln whether or not it is on a standardized test. Water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit at sea level.
But you are missing the implication of teaching to a test. Education is not about teaching rote memorization, it is about teaching children how to LEARN. Because of standardized testing, the children are taught how to take a test and what information is needed to take that test....which much less of a focus on HOW to learn and WHY things are done a certain way.

1. This method doesn't teach a child how to acquire, analysis, synthesize, and apply...it teaches regurgitation.

2. Many valuable areas are being cut, in favor of "test prep".....the arts, enrichment time, recess, etc.
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Old 06-16-08, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by pedagogue
Yeah, parents are fun....which is why I'll never teach at that level.



But you are missing the implication of teaching to a test. Education is not about teaching rote memorization, it is about teaching children how to LEARN. Because of standardized testing, the children are taught how to take a test and what information is needed to take that test....which much less of a focus on HOW to learn and WHY things are done a certain way.

1. This method doesn't teach a child how to acquire, analysis, synthesize, and apply...it teaches regurgitation.

2. Many valuable areas are being cut, in favor of "test prep".....the arts, enrichment time, recess, etc.
I don't think #1 was taught in most elementary and high schools prior to the no child left behind.
Also, what is enrichment time?
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