Archive for June, 2015

TFA Teacher: “How I Would Fix Teach for America”

June 3, 2015

Where it counts! A brave reflection from a ‘Teach for America’ recruit.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Andrew Gerst joined Teach for America and taught in Los Angeles schools, both public and charter. He has offered the following advice to TFA leadership:
How (I’d Like) to Fix Teach for America

For the last two-plus years, I’ve taught math in low-income Los Angeles public schools: first in the Los Angeles Unified School District through Teach for America, and later in a charter school. I have a prestigious degree, a master’s in education, and a minor in mathematics, and I’ve struggled more every single day of all two-plus years than at any other job I’ve ever had—an understatement. I feel I have had some successes, and some of our teachers have done very well. But I can say without doubt that Teach for America did not prepare the vast majority of my “corps members,” as our fellow teachers are called, and me to effectuate the long-term “transformational change” that…

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The Rock Lady

June 1, 2015


If you want to explain the holistic, holistic evaluation, an example of the structure of an holistic activity, an holistic question, the ideal of teaching as it used to be, how to be a great teacher, the antithesis of John Hattie’s philosophy – the true story that follows is it. For me, this story from the ‘80s is an icon. If someone asks me: How could I be a better teacher? I say, read this, absorb this, now go forth and teach.

The Rock Lady

The third-former from the largely Maori-attended secondary school checked the notice on the door – SPECIAL NEEDS TEACHER – then knocked.

‘Come in Ruia.’

Ruia came in and stood there shyly, unsure about what to do next.

The teacher put her arm over her shoulder and guided her to a chair, and then sat down beside her.

On a desk to the teacher’s left were…

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