Posted by Sarah Garland
"Should colleges that train teachers focus on educational theory, instructing future educators in how children develop and how the brain learns? Or should they focus on the more practical skills teachers need to run classrooms and teach children algebra? Is it possible for training programs to do both well?
"These are questions that have become increasingly controversial as debates about how to reform U.S. public education have focused on improving the quality of teachers. Groups like the National Council on Teacher Quality have issued critiques of education schools, and new programs like Relay (a graduate school for teachers that is “practically focused”) are putting pressure on more traditional schools of education to pay greater attention to the practical side of teaching.
“Unless we rethink teacher education, we are faced with a critical stance toward us that I think is going to overwhelm us,” said Gary Natriello, a professor of sociology and education at Teachers College (TC), Columbia University."