Is National Certification for Our Teachers the Answer?

Teachers are becoming more and more….not teachers. The qualifications for a teacher aren’t as rigid as you might think. It varies from state to state and can be drastic. Should we nationalize their certification?

I even cringe when I say this. I personally dislike it when the government gets too involved in day to day matters. When they do, it never turns out too good. Yet there is a problem we need to deal with — Teachers who shouldn’t be teaching.

Purpose of Teaching

Why do we have teachers? They are there to educate our youth. Since the early days of the New World, there have been teachers here to guide the young. They were many times the parents of the children, but they were taught basic math and writing.

Organized teaching systems were developed as the nation grew. Again, the purpose was to educate our youth to take over the nation one day. It was to prepare them for life.

Are they fulfilling that role? Are they preparing our children to lead the world? According to many who just graduated from high school, no. They were not taught the basics of balancing a check book, interviews, getting a mortgage, or anything like that. Yes, there was a class offered that was considered unimportant for those striving for a high GPA that would have introduced them to some of the concepts.

Who Are Our Teachers?

Have you wondered who are teaching our youth? Usually, we think they are experts in their field. A history teacher has been taught all about history. That might not be the case.

My daughter had a history teacher who knew nothing about history. Yes, his concentration was in that subject and he got licensed in it, but he was incompetent in the subject. We found a mistake in the textbook. It was a big historical error. When my daughter wrote her report, she was docked points because she gave the correct data. We pointed it out to which the teacher responded that if the textbook said it was wrong, it was wrong. Really? The teacher couldn’t think for himself so if the textbook was teaching things incorrectly, he couldn’t argue against it. Nor did he give my daughter credit for doing proper research and discovering the truth.

This has happened many times over the course of my three children’s education. Teachers were taught to facilitate a classroom. They were not taught to teach the subject matter. This doesn’t mean all teachers are like this, but way too many are. They are certification in education, but they do not have the ability to effectively teach their subject.

A friend of mine just retired from teaching. She found that in the last few years of her experience, the school systems would not let her teach. She was to facilitate them to learn on their own and to use their computers. With retirement near, she was looking forward to leaving her life passion.

Our teachers are not teaching anymore. Some states have them as glorified babysitters.

State to State Differences

Every state is different. While there are some national criteria that has to be met, the overall education is dictated by the individual state. The criteria to become a teacher is different in each one.

That means the education in each state is different, yet the same standardized tests are given to every American student. There is no consistency in the quality of education the children across the nation are getting.

The question then becomes if we need to go to national certification or not.

Pros and Cons of National Certification

National certification might not be answer. Then again, it just might be. It is something we should ponder at least.

What are the pros to national certification? Well, all students across the country will be on the same educational page. They would all be tested based on the same educational foundation. The same standards would be across the board on how teachers are certified. Teachers could also move between states easier and keep on working.

What could go wrong? A lot of things. For one, this means the national government is more involved in traditionally state authority. This has been a touchy point since the American Revolution. States do not want to be under the federal governments thumb. They want a degree of sovereignty. Taking over education would start a fight that the government might not want.

Writer for ten years, lover of education, and degrees in business, history, and English. Striving to become a Renassiance woman.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store