After teaching 25 years, I watch with mixed emotions the debate over Common Core and the fretting over America’s numbers compared to the rest of the world. Surely we could do better on the Program for International Student Assessment exam, but why is it that the rest of the world copies us, steals our ideas, and covets our citizenship? We are the most creative society on Earth, and our tendency toward chaos, which we so often criticize, is catalyst for that creativity.
Over my career I’ve seen the latest programs, curriculum and tests come and go. In the end, I’ve had no problem with change as long as it kept changing which is why Common Core’s effort to create a unified strategy bothers me. I fear if we finally get organized, then we will become a China — smarter, but stuck for ideas.
We need to elevate the teaching profession and make it more difficult to become a teacher by paying teachers a lot more. Competition will do the rest.
Daniel Holmes, Miami