No Teacher Left Behind

Sherrod Davis

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How would you suggest we as a nation provide consistent learning opportunities for teachers and ensure that they are not left behind in learning about new techniques and strategies?

Technology training is one of the most common types of professional development for teachers. Another effective method is coaching, this two are essential components of an effective teacher professional development program. Teachers should have training (JIT) just in time; this training should be utilized for teachers when they need it (Byrom, 1998). Coaching can build will, skill, it can ensure that there are no teaches in the dark about new techniques and strategies. “A coach can foster conditions in which deep reflection and learning can take place” (Byrom, 1998). Where a teacher can take risks to change her practice, where powerful conversations can take place and where growth is recognized and celebrated”.

Should all teachers across the country use certain practices?

No, teachers should use a variety of professional development practices. Technology encourages teachers to take on new and expanded roles, both inside and outside of the classroom. Professional development for effective technology use can come in a variety of forms, such as mentoring, modeling, ongoing workshops, and special courses.

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Should there be a consistent standard for all teachers to meet, just as students must pass high stakes tests?

Yes, when integrating technology teachers should receive professional development for technology that contains essential components that research has found to be important. These components include the following: “a connection to student learning, hands-on technology use, variety of learning experiences, curriculum-specific applications, new roles for teachers, collegial learning, active participation of teachers, ongoing process, sufficient time, technical assistance and support, administrative support, adequate resources, continuous funding, and built-in evaluation”(Byrom, 1998). A high-quality professional development program should be a ongoing process, not a one-shot approach. Teachers need continued practice to become comfortable with and to implement change, especially in technology use.

Lastly, share your thoughts on how well teachers are being prepared to master the ISTE Standards for Teachers standards in their classrooms.

The ISTE offers a variety of resources that teachers can use to learn about these standards. They offer books, online courses and webinars to assist teachers. The ISTE also has a seal of alignment, when new products or resources are introduced they must first go to a panel to evaluate the material.

Resources

Byrom, E. (1998). Factors influencing the effective use of technology for teaching and learning: