3 Ways Teachers Mold America’s Future

In the age of globalization, education has become critical. It’s one of the major tools America needs so that it can hold its own on the world stage.
Teachers will play a huge role in this revolution. Here’s why:

1. Americans are convinced that mathematics and science skills are important for the future. An overwhelming majority of us believe that more jobs and college opportunities will be available for students with those skills.

2. A growing body of research suggests Americans are falling behind in mathematics and science education when compared to students of other countries. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) ranked American students 21st in the world in science skills and 25th in mathematics. According to the 2011 ACT College Readiness Report, Only 43% of American students graduating from high school are “ready” for U.S. college-level math and a mere 27% are “ready” for U.S. college-level science.

This means that, likely, more than half of college freshman arrive on campus feeling unprepared for their math or science courses! Forget about feeling excited to pursue a STEM major in college.

That’s mind-blowing. And of course, unfortunate.

3. What does this mean for teachers? It means higher standards for them. Teachers are in high demand—but they will be expected to be highly qualified and able to motivate, support, inspire, and guide their students.

The public continues to have a great deal of trust and belief in teachers. In a survey asking which people were most trustworthy regarding public issues, teachers were rated the highest, above members of the armed forces, national experts, and community activists, according to the National Credibility Index. The public is also aware of the direct relationship between a highly qualified teacher and student learning. When asked to rate factors that have the greatest impact on student learning, 44% chose the qualifications of the teacher over other factors, such as class size or socioeconomic conditions of the student and school.

As a teacher, you have a unique opportunity to influence America’s position on the world stage. Don’t take this responsibility lightly.
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