High performing students need high quality teaching.

Bill Keller’s “The University of Wherever” (NYT 10.3.201) highlights the fact that technology-centric schooling does not improve basic learning. The question becomes what kind of classroom best teaches kids to think, calculate, and invent?

Classrooms in countries with the highest-performing students contain very little tech wizardry and emphasis is on pedagogical practices rather than digital gadgets.

School does not have to be grueling to be good but high performing students need more time in school with well-trained teachers. A 2010 McKinsey and Co. report stated that school systems in Singapore, Finland, and Korea recruit 100% of their teachers from the top one-third of the academic cohort versus America where about 23 percent of new teachers—and only 14 percent in high-poverty schools—come from the top one-third.

Parents have the responsibility of making sure their kids are ready to enter school with the literacy skills they need to be successful learners. The early literacy skills children need come from reading and talking with them about a story. This is how children obtain the vocabulary they need to get ready to learn to read. Teachers have the responsibility to be passionate about kids and learning, presenting material while staying connected to every student in the room.

The data seems to  indicate that high performing students need high quality teaching.


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