Monday, December 10, 2012

A TFA response . . .

Last week I blogged twice (here and here) about the AFT's recommendation for a new teacher certification process that included the possibility for a teacher "bar" exam.  Embedded in the report are some sentences about non-traditional certification programs such as Teach for America, (TFA).

. . . The process must require candidates to demonstrate competence in essential dimensions
of successful teaching before being allowed to take responsibility for a classroom and become a
teacher of record.

In today's post  from This Week In Education, Alexander Russo shares the TFA response to the proposal.  Not surprisingly they offer another possible focus for improving teacher effectiveness.

. . . Given what we’ve learned about teacher effectiveness and from the schools and districts making the most progress in raising student achievement, we think it may be more promising to focus on and invest in helping principals become more effective in selecting the most promising new candidates and developing everyone to be effective.

As I shared in my second post on the topic, I don't believe that this proposal will generate significant media coverage unless we begin to see others respond in opposition to the proposal.  Russo isn't seeing a lot of enthusiasm for the proposal and I am not finding much in the media.  I think that this is unfortunate because I believe there is potential for the proposal over time to positively influence public opinion about the teaching profession, something that we desperately need.

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