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Hiring teachers based on ‘likability’ is not the best practice

Education Dive – Linda Jacobson

“With districts continuing to report shortages of teachers in multiple subject areas, a pair of new reports delves into the methods that schools are using to fill teaching positions, suggesting that smarter recruitment strategies and less reliance on whether the candidate is “likable” could not only help schools find teachers, but also keep them.” (more)

Thriving in Your First Years as a Teacher

Edutopia – Andrea Marshbank

“It is a universal truth that early career teachers are overwhelmed. Between classroom management issues, lesson plans, and grading, we’re oftentimes drowning. With all the pressure to simply survive our first few years of teaching, doing anything else in the name of improvement may seem impossible. As a second-year teacher, I have days when I find myself treating life’s necessities, like sleeping, as if they were optional activities.”(more)

Refocusing professional development to make good teachers great

Education Dive – Dr. Brent Raby

“Research shows that an effective teacher can have a tremendous impact on a child’s learning. Therefore, to truly improve education, it is vital to focus on the classroom teacher. In West Aurora School District 129, we knew we needed to improve our professional learning program. In student achievement, our district ranked in the bottom 25% of Illinois districts. Sixty-seven percent of our students are economically disadvantaged, and many require additional programs, resources, and support. Our community had experienced a large influx of immigrants, and many of these children had no formal education. Our schools were serving a growing number of English language learners (ELLs) and students with disabilities. At the same time, we were losing teachers certified to teach English as a Second Language (ESL) and special education. In addition, statewide curriculum changes demanded that teachers have more specific certifications, exacerbating the teacher shortage.”(more)

California defines ‘effective’ and ‘ineffective’ teachers, and why it matters

Ed Source – John Fensterwald

“Intern teachers in programs like Teach for America who earn their preliminary credential while on the job will not have the scarlet letter of being labeled an “ineffective teacher” in California. In adopting the state plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act on Wednesday, the State Board of Education resolved a remaining contentious issue: the definition of an “ineffective teacher.” It decided not to include teachers with intern credentials in the definition after much testimony from former intern teachers and districts that readily hire them. All teachers with a teaching credential — including the standard “preliminary” teaching credential through a traditional teacher preparation program or an intern credential — will now meet the definition of ‘effective.'”(more)

Research: Principals don’t give teachers the truth about performance

Education Dive – Linda Jacobson

“A study by Matthew Kraft of Brown University and Allison Gilmour of Temple University shows that some principals are reluctant to tell teachers that they need improvement based on observations and that observing, documenting and helping unsatisfactory teachers grow can become “overwhelming.”(more)

A Lasting Impact

Education Next – Thomas S. Dee and James Wyckoff

“Teachers matter—and some matter more than others. That recognition has driven a tidal wave of controversial policy reforms over the past decade, rooted in new evaluation systems that link teachers’ ratings and, in some cases, their pay and advancement to evidence of classroom practice and student learning. Two out of three U.S. states overhauled teacher evaluations between 2009 and 2015, supported by federal incentives such as Race to the Top and Teacher Incentive Fund grants, as well as No Child Left Behind Act waivers.”(more)