American Education Week

Next Monday marks, the 89th annual

American Education Week, November 14–20.

Photo by: Ben WerdmullerI am not a professional educator, nor do I have kids in the education system- yet I have this strange connection and understanding of the importance of schools and teachers and the process of educating the masses.

Thousands of teachers around the world spend each day in the classroom with children, teenagers and adults alike. These teachers are a grounding force for the new generations to come. Each day they are helping to impart some piece of knowledge or skill necessary to become a better person and a valuable member of our community.

Imagine for a second – everyday you are ON. In the classroom. In front of 30-40, perhaps a 100 students, all at varying levels of intellect,  resources and family backgrounds. Being a teacher is a hard job- one we should all respect and take a genuine interest in.

In 2006, I completed my undergraduate research project on the effects of No Child Left Behind Act. I looked at socio economic factors such as parental education levels, race, family income and the effect these factors have on standardized test scores. My goal was to statistically prove that there are too many variables for standardized tests to be an effective measurement tool of student success.

Improving public education is a complex challenge.

We cannot move forward without acknowledging the real challenges facing our public schools. One out of every five children in our nation today lives in poverty. Poor nutrition, health care and illiteracy in the home, among other things, have a real impact on learning. Helping all students succeed requires addressing this whole spectrum of needs.

The National Education Association’s 89th annual American Education Week—November 14-20, 2010—presents all Americans with an opportunity to celebrate public education and honor individuals who are making a difference in ensuring every child receives a quality education.

Over the next week I will share some updated data as well as  interviews with teachers and friends of mine at varying stages of their education careers. I asked questions such as:

  • How can students do their best in school?
  • Do schools work well? Or are their changes necessary?
  • How do you measure an effective teacher?
  • How do you measure an effective student?
  • What makes a great teacher?

Check back on Monday to see their answers. Or sign up below to receive it in your email in-box:

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Mike Toner

Based in Alexandria, Virginia Michael is the Manager of Social Media at Navy Federal Credit Union. By evening, he's a husband, dog owner and runner. Toner writes about social media strategy, tools, training and best practices for social and digital marketing programs.


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