April 20, 2008

Head-scratching time on another "teacher sex scandal" news story

I know that newspapers sometimes dig for stories, but the story today in the St. Pete Times, Does the rise in alternatively trained teachers spell trouble?, is just bewildering. The reporter is asking if the fact that two of the six came through alternative-certification programs is an indication that alternative certification programs are magnets for pedophiles, miscreants, felons, and those who still listen to ABBA. There's a pretty substantial gap in logic there. The questions about the quality of alternative certification is about the value of skills imparted in different programs, not the character of the people who go through the programs. Yes, being in a bricks-and-mortar program for several semesters gives faculty a chance to spot people who should not be in classrooms (and we do spot some of them), but school-district employees go through background checks and ethics-training seminars no matter where they were educated and in what major. You can't draw any conclusions from six wayward teachers other than that they deserved to be fired and arrested.

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Posted in Education policy on April 20, 2008 7:02 PM |