by Max Brantley
The taxpayer-supported Teach for America program, which supplies enthusiastic if inexperienced teachers to thousands of schools in lower-income areas across the country, has fallen out of favor in San Francisco.The program has many defenders. But burnout is an issue. After five years, only 17 percent of the program's teachers have stayed with the San Francisco district. The school "reformers" say no problem. There are more where they came from.
The city’s school board made clear this week that staffing some of the city’s neediest classrooms with recent college graduates who are on a two-year teaching stint and with just five weeks of training is no longer acceptable.
... over the past several years, the organization has been condemned by critics, including teachers unions, as a crutch that fills the country’s neediest classrooms with inexperienced and cheap labor.
“Our goal as a district should be to get experienced, highly prepared, fully credentialed teachers with a track record of success into our high-needs, high-poverty schools,” said school board President Matt Haney. “For now, I believe that we should press pause on our contract with TFA, as we consider how best to address our own challenges of getting the best, most-prepared teachers where they are most needed.”