A recent article in the Wall Street Journal revealed that education experts are pushing for a major redo of teacher-prep programs in our country, with tougher admission and graduation standards and a much bigger emphasis on classroom training for candidates who wish to teach in elementary and secondary schools.
This panel would like teacher-training programs to "operate more like medical schools," meaning that, before they can get a license to teach kindergarten through twelfth grade, teachers would log in significant hands-on time in classrooms to prove they are able to help students make progress.
In the article, James Cibulka, president of the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education said, "We need large, bold, systemic changes. As a nation, we are expecting all of our students to perform at high levels, so it follows that we need to expect more of our teachers as they enter the classroom."
As it is today in most states, our future educators only spend 10 to 12 weeks shadowing teachers or student-teaching, and the rest of their time soaking in college lectures. The most disconcerting thing? Studies show that students who opt to enter teacher-education programs generally have lower grade-point averages or lower scores on college-entrance exams than students who enter other professions.
Sharon Porter Robinson, president of the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education, said, "We need to become a more competitive career choice and we need to tap into a much wider span of the talent pool." The panel hopes to achieve this by advocating for a more rigorous accreditation process.
What do you guys think? Do you think the teaching accreditation process should be more stringent?