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Teaching

New Report Blasts Teacher-Prep Programs

By Catherine Gewertz — June 18, 2013 1 min read

A new study of teacher-preparation programs finds much to lament, calling them an “industry of mediocrity.”

Our Stephen Sawchuk explains it all for you in a story on EdWeek’s website today. It’s a very good read, not only for what the study by the National Council on Teacher Quality found, but for the intense criticism it’s getting for its methodology. A professor quoted in Steve’s story likened the NCTQ’s research to evaluating a restaurant based only on reading the menu. Ouch.

The study’s getting big national media play today, with stories on National Public Radio, in The Wall Street Journal, and in U.S. News & World Report, which partnered with NCTQ on the study and published highlights of its findings.

Preparation programs, it turns out, were judged in part on whether they prepared teachers to teach the Common Core State Standards. The study began only six months after the final standards were released (three years ago this month).

Even as many in the field dispute the study, its overall message—that teacher-preparation programs vary wildly in quality—resonates and harmonizes with what other studies have found, Steve reports. Check out his story, and read the NCTQ study for yourself and see what you think.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.