January 7, 2016

Contact:
Elizabeth J. Meyer, (303) 735-3029, elizabeth.j.meyer@colorado.edu
Daniel Quinn, (517) 203-2940, dquinn@greatlakescenter.org

CAP report offers little of substance to advance the teaching profession, review finds

EAST LANSING, Mich. (Jan. 7, 2016) – A recent Center for American Progress (CAP) report outlined a vision for elevating and modernizing the teaching profession. The report provided ten recommendations for improving the public perceptions and experiences of teachers. However, an academic review reveals several harmful policy reforms in the report.

Elizabeth J. Meyer, Associate Dean for Teacher Education and Associate Professor at the University of Colorado Boulder, reviewed Smart, Skilled, and Striving: Transforming and Elevating the Teaching Profession for the Think Twice think tank review project at the National Education Policy Center, with funding from the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice.

The report argued that if we do not change the perception of the teaching profession, schools would not be able to recruit "high achieving young people" into teaching. In her review, Meyer notes that elements of the report's recommendations are likely to be beneficial.

However, Meyer also finds that the some of the report's recommendations could likely have the opposite effect by: (1) increasing the surveillance of teachers; (2) reducing the job security of teachers; (3) evaluating teachers based on students' test scores; and (4) using merit pay systems.

The review also finds that the report relies too heavily on popular rhetoric, sound bites, opinion articles, and advocacy publications.

In conclusion, Meyer says, "Other than a review of contemporary issues, the report offers little of substance to advance the teaching profession."

Read the full review at:
http://www.greatlakescenter.org

Find the report on the web:
https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/education/report/2015/11/03/123747/smart-skilled-and-striving/

Think Twice, a project of the National Education Policy Center, provides the public, policymakers and the press with timely, academically sound reviews of selected publications. The project is made possible by funding from the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice.

The review can also be found on the NEPC website:
http://nepc.colorado.edu

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The mission of the Great Lakes Center for Education, Research & Practice is to support and disseminate high quality research and reviews of research for the purpose of informing education policy and to develp reasearch-based resources for use by those who advocate for education reform.

Visit the Great Lakes Center website at http://www.greatlakescenter.org/