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ERIC Number: ED360253
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1990
Pages: 14
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Teacher Education USA: Western Carolina University Centennial in National Perspective.
Parker, Franklin
Three events in U.S. teacher education are discussed: the founding of the first state supported normal school in Massachusetts in 1839, the founding of Western Carolina University in 1889 (Cullowee, North Carolina), and the announcement by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) in 1989 of guidelines for national certification of elementary and secondary school teachers to take effect in 1993. In exploring the reasons for the low status of teaching as a profession, this paper traces the history of teacher education from ancient through colonial and Victorian times. Normal schools were inspired by European models and provided a climate where teacher education could be idealized as a profession without the elite academy and college disdain. By 1900 U.S. teacher education was hindered by low pay, part year work with most schools open only 3 to 7 months a year, and unfair hiring practices in which relatives of school board members usually got the jobs. With the transformation of society from frontier-agrarian to urban-industrial after 1900, normal school training could no longer meet society's need for education. The institutions had to be upgraded or replaced by higher education programs. Opposition came from traditional eastern colleges and universities and the normal school officials. The application of science and psychology to education aided in the switch from normal schools to teacher colleges. In addition, the rising accreditation standards for teachers in the last few years have raised issues that may eventually help to elevate teaching to a higher status. (DK)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A