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ERIC Number: EJ1062904
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0013-1784
Special Topic/Still Teaching in Spite of It All
Nieto, Sonia
Educational Leadership, v72 n6 p54-59 Mar 2015
For those who believe in the promise of public education, here's an antidote to the many negative messages that educators have been receiving. In doing research for her new book, "Why Teachers Teach Now" (Teachers College Press, 2014), Sonia Nieto contacted teacher educators from across the United States and asked each to nominate a teacher who remained in the profession despite the many obstacles he or she faced. Twenty-three nominated teachers responded in writing. Hailing from different grade levels and content areas and diverse in experience, race, and ethnicity, they work with students who are equally diverse. Their essays reveal an awareness of their loss of autonomy, standardization pressures, and the growing surveillance of their work. Yet in spite of difficult conditions, many teachers choose to stay. Why do they persist? For three broad reasons: for the kids, for the love of it, and to fight back against the constant demands on their time, lack of respect they feel, oppressive conditions that many of their students face, and growing rigid accountability. So what does this mean for policymakers? That teachers should be involved in all conversations about school reform, that many so-called reform policies aren't really about providing a better and more equitable education for all students, and that teacher recruitment must take into account the candidate's philosophy of education. What do teacher candidates think of students from diverse backgrounds, and how can they be superb teachers to all of them? How do they advocate for their students? Do they really believe that all children can achieve to high levels? These are the kinds of questions we should think about when recruiting teachers into the profession because, as Nieto notes, "these are the teachers who will teach now despite conditions that will test their determination but not break their spirit."
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A