For some time, I’ve been hearing (and doubting) the argument that the majority of American teachers were themselves lower academic performers, than college students who entered other professions. Here’s yet another report that makes this claim.
Below is a link to the report and an excerpt. I would love to hear others views on this. How accurate is the report? (I was one of the tops in my class, but apparently, I’m a minority—in more ways than one). Does this claim apply only to a certain sector of U.S. teachers (e.g., elementary vs. secondary)? How much does it really impact students if their teacher is not from the top 1/3 of his/her class? If the data is correct, do you agree with the author’s proposals of what it might take to change the situation? Is America ready to do what these other countries have done to improve the quality and the working conditions of its teaching force?
In a new report, “Closing the Talent Gap: Attracting and Retaining Top-Third Graduates to Careers in Teaching ,” we review the experiences of the top-performing systems in the world—Singapore, Finland, and South Korea. These countries recruit, develop, and retain the leading academic talent as one of their central education strategies, and they have achieved extraordinary results. In the United States, by contrast, only 23 percent of new teachers come from the top third, and just 14 percent in high poverty schools, where the difficulty of attracting and retaining talented teachers is particularly acute. The report asks what it would take to emulate nations that pursue this strategy if the United States decided it was worthwhile.