Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Downward Spiral

Joanne Jacobs has an excellent post on the academic issues with college students and college graduates. I wholeheartedly agree with many of the viewpoints listed and it is well worth your time to read through the article. At ABCTE we continue to see this problem first hand.

Last year we received a grant for our Teach& Inspire scholarship program which is designed to recruit teachers locally for high needs school districts in high needs subject areas. For this first cohort, we received over 400 applications for 300 slots. Unfortunately we were only able to fill 195 of those 300 slots because we could not find enough qualified people in those 400 applicants.
What we saw was incredibly poor writing and communications skills of people who had a earned college degree. How do you earn a college degree and not know how to write at even the most basic level? Our scholarship review team was stunned at the lack of knowledge in many of these college graduates.

My ultimate fear is that the people we rejected will apply for other “alternative certification” programs that allow you to start teaching and then take course work at night. Since the selectivity of these programs is non-existent with the exception of course work and since they have already proven that they can pass that without any real academic skills, we can assume that they will pass and continue to teach.

And the downward spiral continues……….

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