Teachers need a national set standard on getting a teachers degree. This will remove the reciprocity of teachers’ degrees in the USA. Why we have reciprocity of teachers’ degrees in the USA is beyond me. We probably have it because each state winds up having its own way of graduating a high school student. Having a national set standard for student graduation will get rid of reciprocity of a teacher degree. It will also make sure what needs to be taught all across the USA by a teacher.
Having a qualified teacher in every classroom is a good goal. It is a goal that I think will never happen. A qualified teacher to me does not even need to have a four-year degree though. Lots of quality candidates can exist with only a 2-year degree, we need to find them and put them to good work teaching. More on 2-year degree people is discussed later on this page when I talk about the Teach for America program.A streamlined hiring process is crucial in order to get top quality candidates in a school district. This process should only take 2 months so that quality potential teachers do not get discouraged and leave the educational sector all together. I say if they can get all the job openings a school district needs finalized in March and then get most of the people hired by the beginning of June it will do great things for teacher quality. I know school budgeting is going to be a problem until the school year starts, but this is a risk the school district has to take.
Teachers need to be paid a fair wages and I would like to see a set minimum wage to be paid for full time teachers as well. My minimum wage would be 40 grand per year and fair wages are based upon area that you live in plus average pay for a person working in a business setting doing the same thing. Throw in some good benefits and turnover rates for teachers will fall big time, plus this will also bring in more men to the teaching profession and also help with the diversity problem teachers have.
Some school districts are looking at student performance to decide how much a teacher gets in a pay raise. I do like this idea and I would look at students’ performance in the classes he or she teaches over a three-year period to decide this. I would never look at how the overall school did over a three-year period to help determine this.
Stipends for teachers are also key to a good educational system. Teachers should not have to pay out of his or her salary what the school district can supply for them. For classes like Math, English, and History a $1,000 dollar teacher stipend would be in place. For classes like Biology, Chemistry, Home Ec. Art, computer science, shop and all 1st to 5th grade teachers would get a $2,000 dollar teacher stipend. The stipend will be used to buy school supplies for your classroom only, not food for like school parties. Abuse of the stipend will mean loss of your use of the stipend for three years, a second abuse means no stipend period for the rest of your life. Money left over will not be rolled over for next year. This stipened will be handed out on a debit card that the teacher will use. This way we can 100% track all purchases better so less abuse occurs of the stipened money.
The amount of new teachers we are going to need if we continue with our current system is over 2 million over like the next 10 years. Under my system it will be likely over 3-4 million plus in the next 15 years.
Teaching outside of your major is a problem that needs to be addressed. It will be impossible to get all teachers to teach classes for the major he or she has, but we can do better. The can cause quality problems for the students and for the teacher as well. To help control this problem the teacher will have to continue to take college level classes inside the major that they do not have the degree for. I would love for the teacher to be at the level of a college level minor in the field in 5 years, although I do want them to be at a college level major in that field.
I carry very stiff penalties if teachers help students cheat on exams. This is 100% fair and no parent wants to hear that a teacher helped his and her students by fixing test answers of helping them cheat on the test in any matter.
Report cards from teachers will be handed out in a timely matter. A student will get 2 of them like every 10 weeks. One from the teachers that is your regular report card and the other one is a fitness report card handed out by your gym instructor. The fitness report card are must to help get rid of the obesity problem that is becoming a major problem with students all across the nation.
Something new and really never before done in the current system is a new teaching job I call a reading expert. The reading expert job is a job created so that the first grade and second grade teacher will have someone else on the job to help the students learn how to read. They will work with 5 kids at a time. The students will get instruction from them like once to twice a week in some central location like the library so they can get some more one on one type instruction on learning how to read. The reading expert will have enough knowledge to run a class for the day in a substitute type role, but they will not really be used for that role. I will say by hiring these people, students’ grades will go up and less kids will be left behind. The more success, the better.
I will also higher reading experts for other grade levels as well down the road. They include the 3rd and 4th grade, plus the Kindergarten level as well because I so strongly feel that the reading experts idea I have is going to work.
Also I will hire teacher assistants for mainly highschool level classes to keep the student / teacher ratio down as much as possible. Classes like computer science, cooking, health classes, etc..... are classes that would easily be in line for teacher assistants. In some cases like a computer science class I want to keep the student / teacher down to at most 10 students for one teacher. This will make it easier for when students are in a lab so they can get the class work done faster and if work is getting done faster more work can be assigned or new stuff learned which can't be done if you only have one teacher in the class. Another plus for have teacher assistants is that if the regular teacher is out sick they can take over the class which will easily be a whole lot better than a regular substitute teacher. I would put pay of teacher assitants like 75% of regular teacher pay because they do less work.
One thing though, if the school is in a rural enough area jobs for teacher assistants and reading experts may not be necessary.
Although they are not a new idea, teacher coaches are going to be a new vital part in the educational system. We need to have one to two per school. The teacher is coach is like a mentor of sorts helping out the new teacher get used to daily life as a teacher and by helping out by giving the new teacher any support he or she needs. Using teacher coaches keeps more young teachers in the teaching profession. That is a good thing and certainly not a bad thing. Rural school districts may only need just a couple teacher coaches per school district though.
I want to expand the Teach for America program. The Teach for America program was created to help out some school districts that have a tough time finding teachers. If you get selected to be in this program you will work for pay for 2 years in your selected school district and you will not have to pay your off your college debt for two years as well. School districts include Huston, NYC, and the District of Columbia to name a few. We could also expand the program to even more years of not having to pay off the college debt or if you stay in a school district for a few extra years the government could pay off some of the college debt for each year you stay and teach.
Expanding the program to all school districts will help increase the amount of people that we can hire using this program and increase the amount of people that will be in the program. I will also expand this program to 2-year degree grads and any non-recent grad as well. Any 2-year degree grad has limitations put on them though. They do have to be near a college and be taking college classes to help finish off a four year degree and if they stay on with the school district they will have completed the degree in 5 years. I strongly feel a non-recent grad is top quality for this program as well.
Since we expand this program to all school districts, we will have Teach for America training centers in each state. One to two per state at a certain college depending on the size of the state. This will make the program run really smoothly.
Although this is done on the web at some web sites to some capacity, I would love to one gigantic web site created that is a 100% clearinghouse for all teacher jobs in the USA. This will only help solve the job market problem, not 100% cure it.
What is the definition of reciprocity?? As the Merriam-Webster dictionary would say it is recognition by one of two countries or institutions of the validity of licenses or privileges granted by the other.
Example: Under the current educational system if I got a teacher’s license from the state of Oregon my teachers license is only good in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico.
Are Reading Experts and Reading Specialists the same thing?? Yes and no. They do the same function which is to get students to read well, but the reading expert is only for certain grade levels and with a reading expert any student that goes to school will be using one no matter how well they read.
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Keller, Bess "Math, Science Graduates Sign On to
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Mountain News (2006) n. pag. Online. Internet. May 10, 2006
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Mathews. Peter "Program offers a taste of teaching"
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December 7, 2005
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look abroad to find needed teachers"San Jose Mercury
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Viadero, Debra " Troops-to-Teachers Recruits Pass
Muster With Principals, Study Finds" Education Week (2005)
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Owings, William A, Leslie S. Kaplan, John
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Gaona, Elena "Conference focuses on bilingual
Diego Union-Tribune (2005) n. pag. Online. Internet. October
Keller, Bess "U.S. Education Department Gives States
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Baker, Celia R."Classroom vets offer tips for
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Rado, Diane "Veteran teachers harder to find" Chicago
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students' interest" San Diego Union-Tribune (2005) n. pag. Online.
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Mitchell, Nancy "Nation is watching
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October 10, 2005
Toppo, Greg "Teach
for America turns 15" USA Today (2005) n. pag. Online. Internet. October
Hughes, Kristine "Certification program lets
teachers learn as they go" Dallas News (2005) n. pag. Online. Internet.
October 4, 2005
"Top Graduates Line Up to Teach to the Poor" New
York Times (2005) n. pag. Online. Internet. October 2, 2005
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