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Teaching Profession

Why Teacher Quality Is a Good Campaign Issue

By Michele McNeil — June 30, 2008 1 min read

Because respondents in a new Associated Press poll list it as the most significant problem facing their child’s school.

Forty-seven percent think getting and keeping good teachers is a “very serious” or “somewhat serious” problem. Teachers are a bigger issue than overcrowding, lack of student discipline (which came in second), and school violence. Teacher quality also outranks the condition of school buildings, outdated textbooks, placing emphasis on the wrong subjects, low expectations of students, students not spending enough time in school, and thankfully, availability of athletic fields (26 percent think this is a serious problem!)

A good chunk of Barack Obama’s education plan revolves around teachers—recruiting them, paying them better, and giving them mentors. We’ll have to wait until the fall to hear what Sen. John McCain’s plans are for improving the teaching ranks.

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