How many times have you heard a leader of the reform privatization movement say,
“We don’t have time.”
“The kids can’t wait.”
This reader from Montgomery County, Maryland, which has the nation’s best teacher evaluation system (it does not rely on test scores but on professional judgment) writes:
We in MoCo don’t hire inexperienced people. The people that are hired in Montgomery County are well vetted professionals with earned degrees and experience. They are also well compensated and most who opt to come here can be reasonably assured of a long and productive career.
In addition, in MoCo there is a culture of high expectations for all students. Parents, teachers and students are involved and engaged in the schools and the educational process. Employees are treated with courtesy and respect. Unlike their teaching counterparts in major urban areas, their isn’t the daily and constant teacher bashing, vilification and demonization in MoCo.
In addition, we spend over $2.2B per year on our public schools. One last thing, unlike the major urban and close in suburban schools that are supposedly “failing” in MoCo they aren’t testing every day in the name of achievement. Surprisingly, there is real teaching and learning taking place. What’s not to like.
Can this model be replicated? Yes. Will it in urban areas? No. Why? It takes time. Something, according to Arne, Michelle, and Joel we don’t have.