by James C. Sherlock
A great deal of the increase in demand for full-time virtual K-12 (FTVK12) education is driven by rising teacher shortages in the brick-and-mortar schools.
I am not talking about COVID quarantine or other illnesses, but rather endemic shortages. Jobs that cannot be filled. And may never be.
We have well-founded fears that we will never have the number of young people going into teaching that we have seen in the past because of the two-track attacks on the reputation and attractiveness of the profession over the past few years.
- The job actions of teachers unions that are featured on the nightly news continue to trash the reputation of the profession;
- Ed-school-trained Torquemadas sit on the state Board of Education and some local School Boards and occupy too many of the division superintendent and principal’s offices. They are relentless in their attacks on the consciences of teachers with traditional values. It is driving teachers away in droves.
Those wounds will leave ugly scars that will not go away.
Add to that the unpredictability and chaos that characterize many public schools in the time of COVID.
Did I mention that we don’t pay them enough?
Good luck filling those brick-and-mortar public school teaching jobs.
I am not going to write in this series about teacher licensing, but that too is broken. Someone should write that story.
We can certainly open the doors more widely to people who are well-educated but have not gone through the ed school gauntlet. And we can ensure teachers are not forced to go to graduate ed school for indoctrination in order to advance both in position and in pay as is the case today.
American education would inexorably improve over time if we closed every graduate school of education in America, but that is not going to happen.
So here we are, looking for options in virtual education.
Next chapter: follow the money in FTVK12 in Virginia.
See here for the prologue to this series.