Most educators, parents, students, and teachers know that a "quality teacher" is important to a student's academic achievement. However, the term "quality teacher" means different things to different people. For example Mayor Bloomberg thinks a "quality teacher" is a low salaried temporary instructor who will leave the teaching profession before they earn a pension. For education reformers like the misguided "Bill Gates" its the teacher that uses the "drill and kill" method to achieve good results on "high stakes testing". For education reformers like Joel Klein, Michelle Rhee, and Dennis Walcott it's those teachers that are willing to toe the administrative line without complaint or be fired. Of course the majority of us know what the characteristics of a "quality teacher" is.
What are the characteristics of a "quality teacher"? They are listed below.
- A personal and emotional connection with the students.
- A deep knowledge of curriculum.
- Good classroom management skills.
- Repeated and demostrated student academic achievement.
- Respected by the students. as knowledgeable and caring about them.
Our children deserve "quality teachers" along with small classes sizes, adequate resources, and supportive administration to academically succeed To falsely claim that recruiting college graduates with 3.0 grade point averages who are clueless about what it takes to be a good teacher and for most is simply a "stepping stone" to bigger and better positions is not what's best for the children. This leads to a sub-par education and an unstable school environment due to staff turnover.
The fallacy that "newbie teachers", especially from alternate certification programs like Teach For America, are "quality teachers" must be exposed as a fraud on our children. A "quality teacher" is a teacher that meets the characteristics I have outlined and we all know to be true.