70% of teachers in a 2014 Gallup study reported that they felt disengaged from their schools. That is an astounding figure. In this post, I explore one reason and offer suggestions for fixing this condition. This is the first in a series of posts on this topic. I invite you to follow this blog and offer your comments on this urgent topic.
ACCOUNTABILITY–ARE WE ON THE RIGHT TRACK?
$620 billion dollars was spent on education in the U.S. during the 2012-13 school year. Politicians want to know what the public is getting in return for this spending. This makes sense. But if the strategies employed to insure accountability are based upon a theory of worker motivation that says teachers,
Have to be controlled and threatened to deliver what’s needed.
Need to be supervised at every step, with controls put in place.
then we may face unintended consequences that will lead to results contrary to the goals being sought.
Question for Reader
How does the above approach to accountability impact teachers?; Students?
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AN ALTERNATIVE APPROACH TO ACCOUNTABILITY
Identify for the public the specific qualities that effective teachers possess.
Identify for the public the instructional philosophy that all teachers are to exhibit in their classrooms.
Identify for the public the specific skills and knowledge that students must master.
Require frequent contact with parents about their child’s strengths and needs.
Hold superintendents and principals accountable for monitoring the above.
Board of Education reports progress on the above bi-annually to the public.
The above suggestions are aligned with a theory of worker motivation that believes teachers:
Take responsibility and are motivated to fulfill the goals they are given.
Seek and accept responsibility and do not need prescriptive instructions.
Under which approach to accountability is it more likely that we will attract and retain highly intelligent and creative people to join the profession of teaching?
The question answers itself.
Theory X and Theory Y