ERIC Number: ED329509
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Dec
External Standards and Good Teaching: The Pros and Cons of Telling Teachers What To Do. Occasional Paper No. 126.
Porter, Andrew C.
Telling teachers what to do through state and district standard-setting policies is seen as antithetical to empowered teachers and a strengthened teaching profession. Policies for empowering teachers are less well articulated; teacher autonomy is often thought to be the automatic product of an absence of external constraints and guidelines. An analysis is provided of whether good teaching of worthwhile content to all students is better served by standard-setting initiatives or through leaving teachers alone. The challenge is to set standards which guarantee good teaching of worthwhile content to all students. To do this will require standard-setting activities which preserve, or strengthen, the responsibility that teachers and students accept together for student learning. One way to do this might be to shift external standard setting away from reliance on rewards and sanctions and toward reliance on authority. External standard-setting activities would become matters of persuasion, not issues of compliance. The key seems to be involving teachers seriously in the business of setting standards for student achievement. Through teacher participation the standards would take on authority; teachers themselves would be telling teachers what to do. (Author/JD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Educational Principles, Educational Quality, Elementary Secondary Education, Instructional Effectiveness, Participative Decision Making, Personal Autonomy, Standard Setting, State Standards, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Effectiveness, Teacher Participation
Institute for Research on Teaching, College of Education, Michigan State University, 252 Erickson Hall, East Lansing, MI 48824 ($3.00).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Michigan State Univ., East Lansing. Inst. for Research on Teaching.