Education: A Golden Age

“The education sector’s structure and policies will change more in the next 3 years than they changed in the last 2,500 years”

Georgia: We already know effective educators make the most difference

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http://www.ajc.com/opinion/content/opinion/stories/2007/12/25/schoolsed_1226.html

The most effective teachers are those with high SAT or ACT scores and grade point averages, yet few of those high-achievers at the state’s premier universities now go into teaching.

Those students should not have to come out of colleges of education, which have held the franchise too long without producing results. It’s time to retire the education colleges and teach math teachers in the mathematics departments and science teachers in science departments.

New teachers… should have a deep background in their content area, especially if they are teaching math and science, which can’t be faked.

To keep these smart, young people in the classroom, Georgia must abandon its one-size-fits-all raises that assure the lackluster teachers are overpaid and inspiring ones underpaid. The state must introduce a pay-for-performance system that rewards excellence.

Georgia also has to end the costly and counterproductive practice of handing out huge raises every time a teacher gets a master’s degree, even if the sheepskin comes from a fly-by-night diploma mill and has no relevance to the teacher’s content area. Georgia continues to reward teachers based on degrees on their walls rather than real accomplishments with their students.

As a result of this absurd policy, Georgia teachers have become the best customers of fast-food master’s programs, where teachers essentially pull up to the drive-thru, order a quickie educational leadership degree and return home with credentials and higher pay in as little time as a month or two.

2007/12/26 Posted by | Georgia, Performance - teacher, Performance pay, Teacher education, Vouchers | Leave a comment