No Teacher Left Behind

The Responsibility of the Nation?

In short, yes, however not on a national level. Do we need to rehash the problems being experienced with nationalized health care? Do we want those issues affecting our country's future leaders?

While we do need standards for teachers to ensure students are receiving quality education, they should continue to be handled at the state level. States are more in tune with what their school districts need, and are therefore better equipped to provide for them, regardless if that is better textbooks, tablets for students, or continuing education for teachers.


Here in Florida, teachers must meet a variety of requirements prior to stepping foot in a classroom. Criminal background checks, proficiency in the subject they will teach, proficiency in general knowledge, and a college degree are requirements, and that is just to receive their teaching certification. There is much more required prior to landing a job, such as a high quality resume and an interview.

It is my belief these qualifications are sufficient for the hiring of teachers. Many other jobs come nowhere close to such scrutiny of their applicants.

Continuing Education

Just as other professions, such as accountants, must meet continuing education requirements throughout their careers, so should teachers. The teaching profession is expected, and some would say required, to change with the times. The 21st century has posed new challenges to students graduating into the workforce and teachers need to adjust so they can prepare students for those changes.

Regularly held information sharing sessions with teachers from around the district is one way in which teachers can expand on the techniques and strategies they use in their classrooms. Innovative teachers and administrators could give presentations once every two months to share their unique and effective approaches to everything from classroom management to preparing lessons.

Another way to ensure teachers stay on top of what we expect of our educators is to pass the initial general knowledge tests and the test in their subject area every five years rather than just the one time at the beginning of their certification process. Subjects such as science and math are always evolving and teachers should stay on top of those advances.

And finally, while I would think most teachers would readily seek out ways to enhance their knowledge in the field of education, just as I do, it may take making such things a requirement to ensure all teachers do their part to increase their knowledge. Continuing education courses offered through local universities would go a long way in making sure we have the best educators possible in front of our students. Such courses can be taken all at once over a summer break, or spread out over a few years, with a required number of credit hours completed every five years.

ITSE Standards

While I am not sure how teachers are currently being prepared to meet ITSE standards, my fear is it involves learning under fire. In other words, I do not believe they are being sat down and explained their evolving roles and given guidance on how to meet those expectations, but rather they are likely having to figure it out themselves. This is unacceptable.

Although many teachers are currently under the gun while having to transition into Common Core State Standards curriculum, there is no getting around putting off the need to embracing ITSE standards. Principles around the nation are going to see the transition needed to occur to move our schools further along in the 21st century and teachers will be left to sink or swim. Until advanced instruction is made available to teachers, those who dive into the ITSE standards pool on their own will be fine, while those who put it off will be looking for a new job.

However, eventually it school districts will need to take it upon themselves to ensure the instruction of their teachers. Not all teachers have the advantage of obtaining their college degree right now, during the advancement of the career field. Those who have been teaching 15 years need to be shown how to move from their former strategies and techniques into new, more effecting, ones.