Thursday, August 9, 2012

Teacher Loss

So the NYT reports that 50% of teachers leave within 5 years. It's either poor recruitment, poor screening, poor preparation - or something about the job makes it untenable. No other profession would tolerate such attrition. Millions spent on training, practical and technical, colleges, internships, practicums, supervision and yet 50% still vote with their feet. Perhaps instead of blaming the teachers as NCLB and its boosters do, perhaps we as a country should re-examine what schools are for and thus what we want from teachers and thus what they do. As a Math teacher, is it really my role to soothe a suicidal 6th grader because her 24 year-old boyfriend has left her? As a Geographer, is it really my role to provide family counseling to a 26 year-old single parent who has no idea how to raise the daughter she had when she was 14?

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