Congressional hearing discusses teacher preparedness and training
Date Posted: 3/10/2014
On Feb. 27, the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education and the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training met in a joint hearing entitled “Exploring Efforts to Strengthen the Teaching Profession.” The discussion was driven by a panel of four witnesses representing teacher preparation programs and efforts throughout the nation. They discussed elements of their respective programs and how those can be duplicated or utilized. They also offered views on how the federal government and states can be useful in strengthening teacher training, support and certification. There was consensus among the panelists on many topics. Some of those include:
- The necessity of a mentor for new teachers. Rhode Island assigns a teacher/coach to every new teacher to serve as a trusted adviser who is there to provide support but not evaluate.
- The need for a diverse workforce of teachers equipped to address the diverse settings in which they teach.
- A desire to see reporting requirements at the federal level significantly reduced and improved so that the data collected is useful to states and programs in accomplishing their teacher preparation goals.
- Encouraging a more innovative and collaborative approach to preparing teachers for the workforce. This includes collaboration of all available resources: higher education, districts, schools, teachers and etc.
- The importance of ample and meaningful clinical training that exposes potential teachers to the varying types of schools and settings they will encounter.
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