For Teachers, Experience Does Matter
Contrary to claims by some in the education world that teachers don’t improve much after their first few years in the profession, recent studies are showing that teachers’ ability to help students achieve increases over at least the first decade of their careers.
Teachers with more years of experience in the classroom were even found to be linked with unexpected factors such as decreased rates of student absenteeism.
Education Week reports,
Although the studies raise numerous questions for follow-up, the researchers say it may be time to retire the received—and somewhat counterintuitive—wisdom that teachers can’t or don’t improve much after their first few years on the job.
“For some reason, you hear this all the time, from all sorts of people, Bill Gates on down,” said John P. Papay, an assistant professor of education and economics at Brown University, in Providence, R.I. He is the co-author of one of two new studies on the topic. “But teacher quality is not something that’s fixed. It does develop, and if you’re making a decision about a teacher’s career, you should be looking at that dynamic.”