A new report suggests efforts to improve teacher quality, especially in districts serving the poorest students, will continue to be undermined without a shift in teaching’s fundamental nature.
The report, written by Elena Silva, a senior policy analyst for the Washington-based Education Sector think tank, argues that the use of teachers’ time, the distribution of their talents within schools, and the focus of their resources all need rethinking.
It highlights several like-minded programs, focusing primarily on New York City’s Generation Schools, where the students school year is stretched by 20 days but teachers work time remains the same. That helps avoid problems that other extended-time programs have faced, including teacher burnout from extra hours and financial squeezes from extra paychecks, which both result when teachers jobs are stretched instead of focused.
A version of this article appeared in the October 28, 2009 edition of Education Week as Teacher Quality