Monday, April 14, 2008

It's Limbo Time!

Where are the teacher unions in Massachusetts? As defenders of the profession, they should be outraged by a bill that will lower the standard for getting into the profession. McKinsey tells us from their research that selectivity is how the best performing schools in the world build a world class teaching work force. Massachusetts is going to keep the bar high to get into teaching unless you can't reach the bar.

Massachusettss going to allow people to appeal if they fail their teaching exam. They will be able to meet other criteria to get their certification because too many can’t pass. My favorite quote is from a school board member Christopher R. Anderson who said: "These are people in the anecdotal cases I've seen who we don't want to see pushed out of the profession, and the lack of the appeals process has been a hurdle to retaining them"

Alert the Journal of Anecdotal Evidence – once again, we dramatically change an education system designed for large numbers based on anecdotal evidence.

And in a nod to the education groups who love to compare teaching to lawyers and physicians, Republican lawmakers put forth amendments to let doctors and lawyers practice even if they failed their certification exams. Seems that comparison is only good in certain situations.

We will never develop a world class education system without a world class teaching workforce that we will never have until we build more selectivity into the system. We are stuck in a downward spiral – we can’t get teachers who can pass a test because their education wasn’t that great so we are going to lower the bar and let them in anyway, lowering the education prospects of a new generation of students who wont be able to reach this lower bar to get into teaching – and so on.

Thank you Massachusetts for taking a giant step backwards.

No comments: