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Interesting Story of Educational Reform in Finland

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by State, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. State

    State In the Starting Line-Up

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    #70 Jersey

    Something that will appeal to almost everyone.

    Learning from Finland - The Boston Globe

    Treat teachers as true professionals, and the talented will join the ranks of teaching. It's a sad but true insight that decades ago when women were restricted from many occupations, it swelled the ranks of talented teachers who happened to be female. Now, in this day and age, most of this talent has shifted to other careers, such as doctors, lawyers, etc.

    And it's not for lack of spending; in fact, we spend almost more than just about anyone on K-12.
    Source.
     
  2. State

    State In the Starting Line-Up

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    #70 Jersey

  3. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    America puts Political Correctness ahead of common sense, America has to slobber and blather about all of the do-gooder social issues such as Diversity, Skin Color, Gender, Sexual Preferance's etc etc, Loonism has taken over America's public Schools and Loonism wants to make sure that all the children are turned into "Little Loons".

    America's school system isn't interested in Professionalism they are interested in Loony Liberalism.

    The Far Left Wing Moonbats Have Taken America's Schools Over And Now They Brainwash Your Children With Their Liberal Social Left Wing Bullsh!t.

    Oh Jesus
     
  4. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

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    #24 Jersey

    Your articles contradict one another, State.

    First you want us to emulate Finland, which is a socialist country where the school system is entirely public and will not even entertain the idea of converting public schools to private or charter schools -

    Paying teachers based on students’ test scores or converting public schools into private ones (through charters or other means) are ideas that have no place in the Finnish repertoire for educational improvement.

    Second, provide teachers with government-paid university education and more professional support in their work, and make teaching a respected profession.


    Learning from Finland - The Boston Globe

    and then you "source" an article which says the direct opposite:


    In light of all this, it seems that the time has come to start pulling Washington out of education. Not only might the political stars have aligned, but we have fresh new evidence that the federal government is an educational failure.

    Feds Should Flunk out of Education | Neal McCluskey | Cato Institute: Commentary

    Also, just FYI, we are not the country which pays teachers the most money K-12. We aren't even in the top 5.

    In the United States, a teacher with 15 years of experience makes a salary that is 96 percent of the country’s gross domestic product per capita. Across the O.E.C.D., a teacher of equivalent experience makes 117 percent of G.D.P. per capita. At the high end of the scale, in Korea, the average teacher at this level makes a full 221 percent of the country’s G.D.P. per capita.

    Teacher Pay Around the World - NYTimes.com
     
  5. PatsFanInVa

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    I am not wading into the deep end of this discussion, at least not yet. I do want to throw in an anecdote:

    The wife and I were visiting her nursing-home bound mother around Christmas (not to be confused with my also nursing-home bound mother who I drive up to see every couple of weeks.)

    Mom-in-Law's roommate is an adorable, if somewhat talkative, old lady of 90-something. She was recapping ohhhhh pretty much the lives of everyone in her family for the last few decades and when she described (I think) her sister, she was trying to explain how much of a genius she was...

    Her eyes got really wide, when she explained that Sis always had this great mind, and became a teacher!

    I know it's predictable that somebody will say "WHAT? A teacher STILL makes more than the average income by 17%????"

    Bear in mind that an average across a society includes the pizza delivery guy and other minimum-wage jobs -- all in greater numbers than the jobs up the pyramid like machinist, carpenter, editor, engineer, lawyer, or doctor.

    That's why it's important to think about whether being a teacher is considered an impressive goal - or, as that roommate would say, a teacher!

    Back when this old lady came of age, for at least a part of a society, it was a lofty goal to be smart enough to be a teacher. I don't look around and see that attitude among successive generations.

    Let's make a table of the two states, with two different points along continuums representing teaching (T), with other occupations defined by (A), along with plus signs and minus signs for distance from the mean (simplified by omitting the tails):

    State 1 - teachers at just about average pay
    A---
    A--
    A-
    A
    T = A+
    A++
    A+++
    A++++

    State 2 - highly paid teachers
    A---
    A--
    A-
    A
    A+
    T = A++
    A+++
    A++++

    In each example, the teacher's subjective valuation of the career will add to the + level he or she assigns to teaching, if he or she is inexorably drawn to teaching. But the above simplified example deals with salary only. You can hold subjective intrinsic motivation as constant, apart from compensation.

    In State 1, among average Americans, an aspiration to become a teacher will appeal to someone who believes that he or she may be able to become slightly better-off than average. Here's the stats according to a career site that accords with State 1:

    Education, Training, and Library Workers Salary, Earnings and Wage Information | Career Overview

    Education, Training, Library Workers (other than post-secondary)
    Low - $15,500
    Median - $32,200
    High - $62,000

    Here's the numbers for building cleaners
    Low - $15,800
    Median - $25,100
    High - $49,700

    So it's likely that someone who would otherwise be a building cleaner, would want to become a teacher, in the U.S. Both the prestige and the compensation in most circles would argue for a better career. The same goes for a bunch of clerical positions, etc. All of them, on average, take a slight step up when they become teachers.

    But now let's look at, say, graphic designers:
    Graphic Designer Salary, Earnings and Wage Information | Career Overview

    Low - $24,100
    Median - $39,900
    High - $69,700

    Or, perhaps more to the point, something like "lodging managers" - this is basically a guy running a hotel, or running a department's lodging services:

    Lodging Manager Salary, Earnings and Wage Information | Career Overview

    Low - $25,100
    Median - $42,300
    High - $82,500

    The point of this exercise is NOT to say who "should" or "shouldn't" earn more than a teacher.

    As is obvious, careers such as corporate executive etc. are going to be well in excess of teacher pay, as one would expect.

    The point of this exercise is that there will be a great many non-glamor careers that pay in excess of teachers' salaries, adding to the "those who can do/those who can't teach" model (which I regard as something of a slur in any event, given that career choice partakes of motivations other than financial.)

    But to the extent that respect and money are tied to career choice, it becomes evident that we are presenting teachers as somewhere between building cleaners and hotel managers.

    Other occupations respond to market rates; publicly paid positions respond to what we believe we should pay.

    Who we attract with teaching careers is tied to pay. If you aspire to one day make it to the middle, be a teacher. If you aspire to compare favorably to a graphic designer or a hotel manager, you "shoot a little higher" than teaching.

    Is this what we want?
     
  6. patsfan13

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    Another anecdote about Education majors. When I attended college in the 80's they did a survey of Grades vs ACT scores, the students in Education averaged 3.8 GPA's in the School of Physical sciences the average GPA was a 2.1, The ED majors had an avg act score of 19 (max is 35 IIRC), the Science majors had an avg act score of 31.
     
  7. Nikolai

    Nikolai Football Atheist PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Graphic designers get paid? Damn!

    Seriously though, coming out of college, I turned down a teaching career for a number of reasons, and money was one of them. I like to teach, but I'll save that for maybe later in life.
     
  8. DarrylS

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    See this graph often and it can be explained easily... not a whole lot to do with unions or with out of control salaries, it has to do with the dictates of the Federal Government..

    The first spike came in the heals of PL 94-142(1975), education for all handicapped children act.. which dictated to all Educational Authorities how to educated handicapped children..

    Education for All Handicapped Children Act - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The second spike came on the heals of the No Child Left Behind(2001), which was non partisan legislation, but was heavily regulated afterward.. it created more and more mandates for the LEA's...

    No Child Left Behind Act - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The reality for most is that when the Feds get involved they usually create a financial burden for the LEA and never fund it adequately, the answer is to take the responsibility from the feds and let the states figure it out...
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011

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