Without a doubt, teacher-education programs cannot and should not operate as if all is well, because it is not. Several current efforts to reform teacher education in the United States, however, are making things worse. Although stemming from a wide range of actors (including the federal government, state governments, and advocacy organizations), these trends share a fundamental flaw: They focus on “thin” equity.
- “Marketizing” teacher education in the hopes that competition and more alternatives will spur self-improvement.
- Shaming teacher education in the hopes failing grades will spur self-improvement.
- Externally regulating teacher education at the federal level with statistically faulty methods for program evaluation.
- Externally regulating teacher education at the state level with increased program-entrance requirements that hinder diversity without improving teacher quality.
- Internally regulating teacher education with accreditation that relies on problematic standards and use of data.
- Assessing teacher candidates with problematic instruments and ways of using them.
- Prescribing practices that too narrowly define the outcomes for students and teachers.