In a recent contribution to Forbes, President Thomas Bailey discusses ways that graduate schools of education can help address challenges facing the teaching profession and empower future educators.
Pointing to a “disconnect between the profession’s importance and the profession’s prestige,” Bailey cites recent research, co-authored by TC alumna Melissa Arnold Lyon, on the state of the teaching profession that found interest in the profession has declined nearly 40% since 2010.
Bailey calls for improvements to conditions and environmental factors to “attract and retain current educators, empower their voices and reestablish respect for the profession,” including more competitive pay for educators, and support from policymakers, school and district leaders and education thought leaders to enable teachers to develop enriching learning experiences for students.
Bailey speaks directly to the valuable role that graduate schools of education can play in improving the profession through the development of deep, long-term partnerships with community public schools that can support and inspire future and current educators and foster shared expertise and reciprocity; and by strengthening and expanding clinically rich pre-service teaching experiences. One ideal way to do this, he explains, is through teacher residency programs that offer future educators the opportunity to teach and experience the classroom before they graduate.
“Teaching is one of the oldest and most storied professions in our society,” writes Bailey. “But the current state of the profession is unsustainable. Certainly, we must prepare educators to thrive in challenging environments, but we must also work together to make teaching the respected, well-paid, and rewarding calling it deserves to be.”
Read the full opinion piece.