Experience in education matters

From an article by Diane Ravitch

When I saw Linda Darling-Hammond last week in California, she gave me charts from the U.S. Department of Education’s Schools and Staffing Survey which show that the modal years of teaching experience in 1987-88 was 15 meaning that there were more teachers with 15 years of experience than any other group); in the latest published survey, 2007-08, the modal years of experience was one. That means that in 2008 there were more teachers in their first year of teaching than any other group. This is frightening. What sane nation would want to lose its experienced teachers and rely increasingly on newcomers?

People also forget that just a couple years ago Florida was recruiting in India and Canada because it could not find enough teachers here. What are we going to do when the economy turns around? People wanted to be teachers before because making a difference in young people’s lives was important to them unfortunately the field has been reduced to drones teaching to the test.

Education deformers beat the experience doesn’t matter drum every chance they get and we wonder why education is in trouble. The truth is the vast majority of education reformers don’t care about what happens to our children; they are just trying to make a buck.

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