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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

We don't lower standards for pilots


States are dropping licensure tests for elementary teachers writes Abigail Swisher on the National Council on Teacher Quality blog. In particular, they're dropping content knowledge tests or allowing alternatives for would-be teachers who don't pass.


There's a shortage of airline pilots too, but nobody's calling for lower standards to get someone in the cockpit, writes Heather Peske.


Yet policymakers are eager to "lower the barriers" for aspiring teachers "in response to real (or perceived) teacher shortages," she writes. "Since 2020, we've seen at least 12 states lower requirements to become a fully-certified teacher."

To be successful, teachers must know the subject matter as well as the science of learning and their individual students. Anyone who has watched elementary math teaching knows how much math content knowledge a teacher needs to diagnose and understand students' misconceptions to effectively teach them math.

Some argue for reducing requirements to increase the racial and ethnic diversity of the teacher workforce, Peske writes. It won't advance racial equity for students to be taught by teachers who don't understand the content. Furthermore, she writes "the tacit message is people of color are incapable of meeting standards."


NCTQ's new report, Digging Deeper: Which Types of Institutions Achieve Excellence and Equity for Aspiring Teachers of Color, highlights "teacher prep institutions that achieve racial equity in their licensure pass rates," Peske writes. It can be done.


Bus drivers are working as substitute teachers in Fayette County, Georgia. They have "behavior management" experience.


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7 Comments


Guest
Aug 02, 2022

"To be successful, teachers must know the subject matter as well as the science of learning and their individual students."


If this were strictly true, then in general the students emerging from the public school system that employs such well-educated and credentialed teachers would be more "successful" than students who have been homeschooled by (in general) amateurs. But if the knowledge "of individual students" matters much more than "the science of learning" then a number of observed results are explained. That students learn more from public school teachers they have taken classes from previously -- familiarity between them established -- is explained. That small campuses where every adult can recognize every child tend to have more "success" (however defined)…

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zeev
Aug 03, 2022
Replying to

Nothing in social sciences is "strictly true" so the effort to prove or disprove anything based on such fallacy is meaningless. It is, however, obviously true that TEACHERS cannot teach what they don't know. It does not mean that students can't acquire such knowledge through other means, whether tutoring, parental/sibling help, or self-study, yet the statement was said about teachers, not about students. Now, it is true that parents as teachers may be, in general, amateurs, yet they have the advantage of being able to prepare ad-hoc in any subject they feel weak at before conducting a lesson. Given the fact that most parents did finish high school, it should make such preparation effective easily until K-8 content. Beyond that, most homeschooling…


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Bruce Smith
Bruce Smith
Aug 02, 2022

The incompetence of employers like Fayette County, and of the ed schools slammed (as an entire class, which is unfair) by "Unknown member" below calls into question whether the qualifications such as high school diplomas regularly awarded by such organizations ought to be recognized: I suggest employers prepare to examine the applicants attaching such credentials to their applications, since they are rapidly losing their credibility.

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Bruce Smith
Bruce Smith
Aug 09, 2022
Replying to

With school about to start, they have over 30 open positions, plus drivers presumably qualified to drive buses teaching without appropriate qualifications: is any other evidence needed?

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Guest
Aug 01, 2022

What the major airlines do is pawn off pilot develop to the commuter airlines who have low pay and lower standards. Remember the Colgan Air Flight 3407 crash due to the pilot not knowing what to do if the wings iced up as the aircraft was flying towards Buffalo.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colgan_Air_Flight_3407


There are many examples of this. The most dangerous white collar job is being a private passenger aircraft pilot. One should be careful when using case studies across industries or fields.


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rob
Aug 01, 2022

I'd rather have an airline pilot as a teacher than someone who went to ed school, so maybe there is a solution here? Heck, I'd settle for an electrician, architect or anyone else who actually knows something about at least one thing.

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