I came across an article yesterday from the Huffington Post, entitled “Millennial Have Pretty Depressing Things To Say About Teachers“.
The article shared the following harsh words:
“In June 2013, rankings from the National Center for Teaching Quality gave most teacher preparation programs low scores, and a report released in conjunction with the rankings said they reveal ‘an industry of mediocrity.'”
As someone who pours her heart and soul into everything she does for students, pushing them to achieve at their highest levels, often higher than they thought possible, these words are tough to read.
However, today was the Prairie Lakes AEA Superintendents Innovation Showcase, and I was reminded just how great our teachers are. Celebrating awesomeness through our region, we saw examples of students who are published authors – IN THEIR MATH CLASS. Students who had worked with their teachers and districts to form a robotics club, build their own 3D printers, use a 3D printer to design cars, moving parts, and cell phone covers. We saw examples of online learning, student directed learning, and community showcases.
These teachers, students, and administrators are continuing to lead the way and lead by example. To hear kids exclaim in awe about the work they were doing – “I can go on Amazon and find my book!” “This 3D printer changed the course of my life!” was truly inspiring.
If you followed the link to the article, you’ll note that the overall article is really about improving teacher prep programs. I don’t disagree with that premise – there is definitely room for improvement, but there are a lot of really great teachers in our midst, and maybe if we took more time to celebrate them, like we did today, the perception of teachers by the “millennials” wouldn’t be quite so gloomy.