"Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.
The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young." - Henry Ford

Teachers, Training, How to Get Better

Getting Better at Getting Better: ".... In one area above all, the failure to improve is especially egregious: education. Schools are, on the whole, little better than they were three decades ago; test scores have barely budged since the famous “A Nation at Risk” report came out, in the early nineteen-eighties. This isn’t for lack of trying, exactly. We now spend far more per pupil than we once did. We’ve shrunk class sizes, implemented national standards, and amped up testing. We’ve increased competition by allowing charter schools. And some schools have made it a little easier to remove ineffective teachers. None of these changes have made much of a difference. All sorts of factors, of course, shape educational performance. For one thing, the United States has more poor kids relative to other developed countries, and poor kids do worse on tests, on average, all over the world. Schools can’t make up for that gap entirely. But there is one crucial factor in how kids fare that schools do control; namely, the quality of their teachers. Unfortunately, as two new books, Elizabeth Green’s “Building a Better Teacher” (Norton) and Dana Goldstein’s “The Teacher Wars” (Doubleday), point out, teacher training in most of the United States has usually been an afterthought. Most new teachers enter the classroom with a limited set of pedagogical skills, since they get little experience beforehand, and most education courses don’t say much about how you run a class. Then teachers get little ongoing, sustained training to help them improve. If American teachers—unlike athletes or manufacturing workers—haven’t got much better over the past three decades, it’s largely because their training hasn’t, either...." (read more at the link above)

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