"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Is the US Department of Education Saying Educational Administrators Should be Non-Educators?

The following was presented as an exemplary quote in Teaching Matters, published by the US Department of Education. It is listed among the “top 5 teacher quotes” and labelled as “wisdom from teachers heard by ED” (Department of Education):

"We need good teachers to stay as teachers, not move to administration.” (Teacher in Va.) http://content.govdelivery.com/bulletins/gd/USED-3c7736

I have two reactions:

Yes, it is a good idea to confirm that administration is not a higher form of life, just a different path, and that teachers need not “strive” to be administrators.

But the statement could also be interpreted as saying that all teachers should stay teachers, and that administrators in education need not have (or should not have?) actual teaching experience.

It is suspicious that this quote is included in a document from a the US Department of Education, run largely by those with no teaching experience.

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