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Teacher education and effective reading instruction

An interesting article that points out that most states don't require new teachers to be trained, nor tested for licensure, in effective reading instruction. I suspect this will include Oregon's ORELA test for elementary school teachers. I'll find out when I take the test hopefully next year.

Even more alarming is the fact that teachers receive professional continuing ed in more of the same:

Sadly, my own personal experience has been that classes providing teachers continuing professional development often end up being based on more of the same non scientific ideology. Is it fair, then, to fault an individual teacher, principal, or even an at risk environment for students’ failure to make adequate yearly progress in reading when teachers are not required to demonstrate proficiency in “best practice” to begin with?

Yes and no. No, you really can't fault the teacher, principal, school, district or state as a single point of problem. They all operate together, in a box, as a mindset, with groupthink. But this needs to be broken. Wikipedia has a nice article on groupthink which included some suggestions on breaking the cycle . It starts at the teacher colleges but individual teachers can let their voice be heard, too. If you are a teacher in Oregon and want to use Direct Instruction curriculum (for instance SRA), be prepared for a fight - or to be fired. But sometimes you just have to do what is right.

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