I was fortunate enough to have a guest blog post published in EdWeek. How Do We Hire the Very Best Teachers excerpt below:
Think back on your education – all those years sitting in classrooms and diligently taking tests. If I asked you to name the best teacher you had, or to explain why that teacher was so great, could you do it?
I’m going to guess the answer is yes: We all had those few special educators that really got through to us, and it’s easy to pinpoint teaching style, passion, personality or another key trait as the reason why. But as they say, hindsight is 20/20. So while it might be easy for us to remember which teachers made an impact, it’s a bit more difficult for districts to determine and select teacher prospects that will do the same.
The ability to identify and hire the very best candidates is extremely important. While there are countless factors that affect the success of any student in the classroom, research has shown over and over that teacher quality is the school-based factor with the largest impact on student achievement. That’s not to say teacher quality is “the problem” – but it should remain top of mind as an area of focus when considering and working toward district improvements.