September 26, 2014

Who do you trust to do what's best for New York's students?

Source: NYSUT Communications
who do you trust

The following appears in the Oct. 13, 2014 edition of City & State magazine. The PDF version is available to download and distribute.

Q: Who do you trust to do what's best for New York's students?


who do you trust?That was the number one answer given in a recent Times Union/Siena College poll of upstate New Yorkers. The public trusts teachers more than anyone else when it comes to putting their students' interests first.

And they should.

New York's public school teachers are consistently rated among the best and most highly educated teachers in the nation. They face a demanding uphill climb to earn the right to teach our children. Aspiring teachers must earn a college degree, complete a minimum of 40 days of student teaching, and pass multiple certification exams. They must pass rigorous background checks and successfully complete required training on child abuse prevention, school violence issues and ensuring the dignity of all students.

That only gains them an initial certification to teach. They must then also complete additional courses. Have a mentor for one year. Succeed as a classroom teacher for three years before being eligible for due process rights. And earn a master's degree within five years.

Teachers must also complete 175 hours of professional development every five years to maintain their certification.

Few states require as much of their public school teachers as New York does.

No wonder New York state is widely recognized for its exemplary teaching force and earns high marks for its rigorous standards and credentialing requirements - typically ranking among the nation's top ten.

You are right to trust your teachers, New York. They've earned it.

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