Teaching Profession Letter to the Editor

Teacher Training Needs New Focus

January 23, 2013 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

Regarding James S. Liebman’s Commentary “Ending the Great School Wars” (Dec. 12, 2012): The Measures of Effective Teaching Project found, “Across all [five] instruments, raters rarely found highly accomplished practice for the competencies often associated with the intent to teach students higher-order thinking skills.”

A related MET report found that teachers scored low on “analysis and problem-solving” and “student participation in making meaning and reasoning.” Another report, by the Consortium on Chicago School Research, found similar results, and as reported in the Teacher Beat blog on edweek.org (Feb. 9, 2012), the findings “highlight some fairly consistent weaknesses in instruction and raise big question marks for teacher and leadership preparation,” particularly in light of the Common Core State Standards.

Therefore, based on these reports and others, and generally poor student achievement, it is absurd for Mr. Liebman to argue, “This fight is ... not about public school pedagogy or curriculum,” when it manifestly is the case.

Mr. Liebman is not only on the wrong battlefield, he is in the wrong war. There is a pedagogy and curriculum issue, but it rests squarely in schools of education and other organizations engaged in teacher preparation.

When showing their teacher-candidates how to engage new and revisited subject matter, teacher-educators must change their reliance on rote-inducing, literacy-defeating serialism to one that employs and promotes explicit analytic thinking, reading, and writing strategies. Only then will teachers be able to overcome the poor preparation they now receive and thereby take possession of their own profession.

Victor P. Maiorana


The Human Knowome Institute

Deer Park, N.Y.

A version of this article appeared in the January 23, 2013 edition of Education Week as Teacher Training Needs New Focus


Student Well-Being Webinar After-School Learning Top Priority: Academics or Fun?
Join our expert panel to discuss how after-school programs and schools can work together to help students recover from pandemic-related learning loss.
Budget & Finance Webinar Leverage New Funding Sources with Data-Informed Practices
Address the whole child using data-informed practices, gain valuable insights, and learn strategies that can benefit your district.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Classroom Technology Webinar
ChatGPT & Education: 8 Ways AI Improves Student Outcomes
Revolutionize student success! Don't miss our expert-led webinar demonstrating practical ways AI tools will elevate learning experiences.
Content provided by Inzata

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Teaching Profession Summer Jobs Have Become an (Unwelcome) Tradition for Many Teachers
Many teachers rely on summer as a time to earn much-needed extra income.

4 min read
Image of a computer at a desk with "Job Search" in the search window.
Syuzanna Guseynova/iStock/Getty + EdWeek
Teaching Profession Opinion The Teacher Who Inspired Me to Be Who I Am Today
It wasn’t until 10th grade that a teacher truly saw me for the first time.
Raj Tawney
3 min read
Surreal art of dream success and hope concept, a man in a grey environment looks through an open door into a bright colorful exterior
Jorm Sangsorn/iStock
Teaching Profession Opinion Teacher Stress Is Not Inevitable
But first we need to stop expecting teachers to be Band-Aids for system inequalities. Sacrifice shouldn't be part of the job.
Kristabel Stark, Kathryn Meyer & Elizabeth Bettini
4 min read
Illustration of teachers and students.
Mary Haasdyk Vooys for Education Week<br/>
Teaching Profession Q&A Why This Author Wants to Ditch the Term 'Teacher Burnout'
Alexandra Robbins' advocacy on behalf of teachers stems from her own research for a book on the teaching profession.
5 min read
Alexandra Robbins
Alexandra Robbins