It seems the headlines have been filled with controversy over the state of education, and more specifically, the quality of teachers, these days. The LA Times sparked it off by obtaining seven years of math and English test scores from the Los Angeles Unified School District and using the information to estimate the effectiveness of L.A. teachers. In the first installment of analysis, they found that some kids were getting low-performing teachers repeatedly (the bad news), but that, “contrary to popular belief, the best teachers were not concentrated in schools in the most affluent neighborhoods, nor were the weakest instructors bunched in poor areas” (the good news).
Check out the always fierce Dana Goldstein for a thorough analysis of the L.A. teacher dust-up.
Meanwhile, here’s an actual teacher talking about what it takes to be effective. Take it from Dena Simmons, a 7th grade teacher from the Bronx and another activist featured in my new book: