Public schools teach math and science much better when the teachers DON’T have a degree in education

This is from the Wall St. Journal:


This month 3,700 recent college grads will begin Teach for America’s five-week boot camp, before heading off for two-year stints at the nation’s worst public schools.

Teach for America offers smart young people something even better than money – the chance to avoid the vast education bureaucracy. Participants need only pass academic muster and attend the summer training before entering a classroom. If they took the traditional route into teaching, they would have to endure years of “education” courses to be certified.

The American Federation of Teachers commonly derides Teach for America as a “band-aid.” One of its arguments is that the program only lasts two years, barely enough time, they say, to get a handle on managing a classroom. However, it turns out that two-thirds of its grads stay in the education field, sometimes as teachers, but also as principals or policy makers.

More importantly, it doesn’t matter that they are only in the classroom a short time, at least according to a recent Urban Institute study. Here’s the gist: “On average, high school students taught by TFA corps members performed significantly better on state-required end-of-course exams, especially in math and science, than peers taught by far more experienced instructors. The TFA teachers’ effect on student achievement in core classroom subjects was nearly three times the effect of teachers with three or more years of experience.

As always, whenever an alternative system of education does a better job of teaching than the traditional method, the teachers’ unions are against it, because they are afraid of competition.

Another interesting fact appears in this article by CBS news:

education majors… enter college with the lowest average SAT

It’s a tragedy that the dumbest college students are the ones who end up becoming teachers. In my opinion, the education major should be abolished.

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September 17, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Education, Math, Science.

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