Saturday, December 14, 2013

Reality check

This has been floating around for a time. 
I work hard I admit it.  but some of this stuff, glance again.

"The Teacher Advancement Program, which uses both student test results and observational methods to assess teaching effectiveness, concluded that 85% of teachers were effective."

Uhm..define "effective" and 85%?
We have higher education, but I am still bothered by one stat.  Teachers are mostly lower class women with below average IQs. 

I was at a workshop once and the moderator says "look we are all diverse."  Contrary me had to point out.  "no we are not of the 50 something people, only 3 are men, the rest are women and the minorities do not represent the averages in this state".

"The national average teaching salary is $56,069 (starting teaching salary is $35,672). Teachers also usually spend a lot of money out of pocket for classroom supplies, grade papers on the weekends, and spend hours after school prepping for lessons." Okay I'll buy this.  Nurses average $66,000.  Why use nurses?  Because like teachers they need a bachelor's degree and like teachers, it is a job mostly for women.  I have a master's and make far less than the average, but I live in a rural area.  Compared to the household incomes here, I make a great deal.    Possibly a better number would be "compared to the average of the area and the cost of living."

Myth  3 
“Teaching experience doesn’t matter because anyone can teach.”

I will agree with that,  though I would counter that many things such as handling people and knowledge, you do not need to go to four years of college to learn this.

"...teachers work an average of 53 hours a week."  How many other professions work extra hours?  Salesmen?  Business people?  Realtors?

Myth 5 "Teachers are solely responsible for learning."

"According to the Commission on Effective Teachers and Teaching and Hillary Clinton, it takes a village to raise a child."

What?  Hillary?  Teachers are the most important factor in education.  We can and do make a difference.  I and my dedicated colleagues are swining in there every day.

"that incentivizing teachers with bonus pay based on good results, without good professional develop programs in place, does not make a notable difference in student results nor does it increase teacher motivation."

Maybe.  But I have seen other studies that say students perform better when there are incentives for teachers.  There is also this, if we pay the good teachers more, they can stay in education.