Teaching Toward Equity
Published in TC Today - Volume 30, No. 1
11/21/2005 12:29:40 PM
As we embark on another academic year, the importance of teachers and their contributions to society cannot be overestimated. During this past year, I co-chaired a special commission of the New York City Council charged with recommending the best uses for the billions of dollars in additional school funding that the city hopes to soon receive as the result of a decade-long lawsuit against New York State. In hundreds of hours of testimony, what we heard - again and again and again - was that school reform cannot succeed unless and until every child has the opportunity to work with an excellent teacher.
This issue of TC Today is a strong reminder that preparing excellent teachers is one of the most important things we do here at Teachers College. Our cover stories reflect our philosophies and processes for doing so, but more importantly, they are a window into the lives of a handful of tremendously dedicated, idealistic and talented individuals who have committed themselves to teaching young people and improving the world. These aspiring teachers came to us already possessing excellence. We are merely giving them the tools to apply it in the most effective ways possible.
Speaking of school reform: in June TC formally launched its Campaign for Educational Equity-- a new initiative to close the gap in opportunities and outcomes between the nation's most advantaged and disadvantaged students--and hired Michael A. Rebell to lead it. Beyond winning a $14 billion verdict on behalf of New York City's schools, Michael has worked to learn about problems in schools and help develop solutions nationwide. We are blessed to have him and that Laurie M. Tisch, a long-time member of our Board of Trustees, is chairing the Board of the new Campaign.
Finally, TC lost a great friend and leader in July with the passing of Arthur Zankel, Vice-chair of our Board. An avid supporter of our work with disadvantaged students, Arthur will be greatly missed. As we carry on with TC's mission and the work of our Campaign, we will build on his legacy of caring and enthusiasm.