10,000 Teachers Empowering 10 Million Minds
One of the most profound elements of Rising Above the Gathering Storm was the acknowledgement that allowing market forces to remedy the climate for a vibrant future is unrealistic. The market system has perpetuated the lack of preparedness of the United States to maintain its entitlement as a leader in science and technology. As stated in the article, other nations have enticed multinational companies to reside in their country due to a low wage structure, skilled workforce, and aggressive government policies on taxation and the cost of capital. Improving our capacity to equip the next generation for science and technologies that have yet to be developed is our greatest resource in retaining and attaining multinational companies to the United States.
The recommendations on K-12 education are to attract 10,000 of the brightest young minds to the teaching profession annually. Those who enroll would receive a 4-year scholarship for a bachelor’s degree in physical or life science, engineering, or mathematics. These college students would receive a K-12 science and mathematics credential and would receive $20,000 a year in scholarships for educational expenses over a 4 year span. The authors cite UTeach and the California Teach program as examples of implementation.
After a cursory overview of UTeach and the California Teach program, the arguments made in Rising Above the Gathering Storm are quite compelling. Teachers who exit these intensive programs will be immersed in the latest metacognitive strategies, relevant technology, and a comprehensive understanding of science and mathematics. This is an idea that will produce highly competent teachers capable of improving instruction in the classroom. Likewise, graduates from these programs are likely to be viewed as experts in their craft, capable of engaging in generative conversations with their peers to improve the collective capacity of their learning organizations to increase student achievement.