Saturday, March 9, 2013

I was reading the St. Cloud Times today and there was an article by AJ Kern about how Minnesota needs to raise it's standards in teaching.  He states that by requiring more expertise from teachers in their subject matter, this will assure top performance in education.   At one point he states "Research also shows master's degrees in "Teaching and Learning" and "Curriculum and Instruction" provide negligible benefits to students while costing Minnesota taxpayers."  Even though I went online and found where both of these quotes were written, I still take offense to this statement as I am obtaining my master's in teaching and learning right now.  How are my educational classes causing negligent benefits to my student?  Every single article or book I read and the research I am conducting is to provide a positive impact on my teaching.  Not only do I reflect on my teaching weekly, I also self reflect with an emphasis on growing and stretching my thinking personally.  Kern also states  "The U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan told the American Enterprise Institution that an education master's degree-and bonuses-are an example of spending money on something that doesn't work."  Both statements seem contradictory, saying that we need more expertise from our teachers; thus when they go back to school for more education, it not only is a waste of money but is causing negligible benefits to students.  For the amount of time and cost that I am putting into my teaching, along with thousands of other educators, the state of Minnesota should be proud and supportive of their educators.  I will have to do some more research into why obtaining a master's degree in education is a waste of money and should not be linked to teacher bonus pay.  I would be interested in a discussion on how teachers could improve their wages without being linked to education.  Currently, the only way this can be done is by obtaining more education. Unlike big business, with chances of bonus pay, commissions, or advancements, teacher salaries are truly at the hands of the people in our communities and nation.


  1. How could getting a mastered in Teaching and Learning possibly "provide negligible benefits to students?" I look at how much I have grown as a teacher within the past 2 semesters and do not agree with Kern's comment. While currently in my masters program I am reflecting and analyzing my teaching everyday. I know that I have become a better teacher already. I too am interested in her research. It is hard to not take offense to this when we know as students completing our masters that we put our heart and soul into our students and education.

  2. For the amount of money I am paying out of pocket and the time I put into my homework to become a better teacher, the more I think of this article the madder I become. To think they say we are taking all this time for a big "bonus" check, I'm so sure, $12,000.00 later... I'm being more negligent to my own kids than the ones I am teaching.