Tuesday, March 08, 2005

How can we get them to stay?

Whoa! I knew the first few years of teaching were tough--they were for me--but not this tough. Edutopia reports that nearly half of all teachers leave the profession within five years. Half! Wow. This begs the question of what we can do for teachers to have a more positive experience. Edutopia suggests that first year mentoring programs help. I'm sure more pay would help too :-). I also think it's a simple fact of overworking teachers. To expect a new teacher to come in and carry a full load is setting them up for frustration. They should be given less workload and more time for preparation and reflection. Even with more experienced teachers, I think the lack of time for reflection makes the educational system suffer. I know everyone's on a tight budget, but we should be aware of what it's costing us. When teachers don't have time to reflect on their methods, to explore new technologies and pedagogies, and to follow-up with troubled students, then teachers will burnout and students suffer.

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