Thursday, April 24, 2008

Elementary School Teacher Certification
..... Know any Math ????

From Sudhakar reporting:

A superintendent of a large school district said that they opened up some elementary school teacher positions, and he got hundreds of applicants! He made them all take a math test, but he said only a handful survived. Apparently, here is one superintendent who "gets it".

Other points he made:

.... * K-4 is the most crucial part of a child's education, when kids form lifelong opinions about whether they love or hate math. That is where the focus should be.
.... * Parental support is crucial for a child's academic success. Educate parents on how important math is to their child's future.
.... * Hire specialists to teach math in early grades. Split class times so teachers who love math get to teach it all day to different sections or grades.
.... * Understanding concepts and skill building have to go hand in hand. Focus on concepts alone does not produce results.
.... * OSPI and the Schools of Education need to have a separate track for math teachers, and require them to be proficient in the subject matter (even if they are elementary teachers). Right now, the certification requirements are apparently very lax.

When I hear these things, I feel happy that progress is being made at the grass roots level by leaders who do the right things, with or without help from OSPI.

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