How can we transform the field of teaching? Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, has some ideas. First, she says, we need to "make this a middle-class profession" and ensure that teachers receive the pay and the benefits that will allow them to provide for their own families. Second, we need to improve the professional conditions so that teachers feel they have the trust, the collaborative environment, and the tools to be successful in their careers and achieve the overall goal of reaching every child with whom they are entrusted. "We need to make this [profession] a first choice," she says, for women and men from all cultural and economic backgrounds.
In this edition of the Harvard EdCast, Weingarten shares her thoughts on how to attract more excellent teachers to the profession, and the impact of teachers on children, communities, and the nation as a whole.
The Harvard EdCast is a weekly series of podcasts, available on the Harvard University iTunes U page, that features a 15-20 minute conversation with thought leaders in the field of education from across the country and around the world. Hosted by Matt Weber, the Harvard EdCast is a space for educational discourse and openness, focusing on the myriad issues and current events related to the field.