#ASCDforum discussing #teacher #education

Use the titled hashtag to discuss teacher education with ASCD. I scanned the link they provided, and here’s what I saw:

Educators have begun to make their voices heard. For example, 2012 Emerging Leader and Regional Science Coordinator Fred Ende has five suggestions for improving teacher preparation:

  • Prepare educators to be specialists, instead of generalists.
  • Provide clarity around the certification process.
  • Connect K–12 educators with postsecondary educators to share curricula and methodology.
  • Get parents and students involved in teacher education classes.
  • Start recruiting teachers at the high school level.

Perhaps I have to respond to the original post by Ende, which is here. As a teacher educator myself, let me respond to each of the above from my experiences. 

  • Specialists? Well, how would that apply to elementary education? No one ever seems to adress eled. We teach most if not all subjects.
  • Clarity for certification, now that I can agree with. When advising students in higher education, it’s too fluid to always get it right.
  • Connect K-12 with higher education. Well, we already do that in student teaching internships. And, from my experiences, school systems don’t really seem all that interested in teacher ed’s suggestions. They have their own pressures and mandates and requirements. For instance, they’re not really going to want to hear my thoughts on the CCSS because they HAVE to deal with it. Also, as a social studies person, schools are not really interested in what I have to offer because they don’t teach it. I’d be more than happy to offer my expertise, but it doesn’t match the demands put on the school system by administration and policymakers.
  • Parent and student involvement. No. No, I don’t think so. Well, from a logistical standpoint, how would that work? What if you teach courses on campus? Or, teach during the school day? I suppose I really do not understand the benefit of this, unless you were in some kind of laboratory school environment. But we’ve shifted away from that over many decades. 
  • Start recruiting at the high school level? Absolutely not. How many of us can be sure what we wanted to do with our lives in high school? Teacher education is already a highly scripted affair that leaves little room for electives. Unless you’re thinking of pulling teacher preparation completely out of traditional higher education and into some kind of vocational or associates or alternative type community college setting, then I really don’t see the point or the value in that. 

My thoughts. Yours?

Comments

  1. Perish the thought, but this looks like the future of teacher ed. Involved parents. Just what you guys need at the university level. I can tell you about this at the secondary level. The type I’ve seen ain’t too pretty.

    • Right? I don’t understand the need for parent involvement. Now, whose parents? The school’s in which they are placed? But, student teachers are not technically as such until their fourth year. And, if we’ve got, say, 14 students in a cohort, are we talking about their students’ parents or of the school community? This makes no sense.

      • Recruiting HS students. Now, that’s interesting. One of the projects I used to do at the MS and HS level was to have students create and develop a unit or series of mini-lessons to teach. It gave them an opportunity to become aware of the teaching profession and it gave me an opportunity to see how they might teach if given the opportunity. They got to do everything with my supervision. That would include: calling the roll, to developing activities, tests, grading papers (usually quizzes,) etc. I usually did this prior to breaks and after the spring and June testing season. After this only a few students would consider becoming teachers. Many said it looked easier than it actually was. So recruiting HS students is nuts. In addition, not many of us at 17 or 18 know what we want to do. Isn’t that the purpose of college?

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