College students: Teaching is for underachievers

New survey reveals high-performing students say teaching is just not worth it

teaching-students-careerIt’s Teacher Appreciation Week this week, a national campaign to thank the often thankless teachers and faculty for their hard work in encouraging and motivating today’s students. Yet, though students appreciate the teachers who make a difference in their lives, many say teachers are just former students who couldn’t hack it.

By now, most everyone is aware that there’s a national teacher recruitment crisis as aging baby boomers begin to leave the profession and current graduating students often see teaching as the least attractive career path.

But why?

According to a new report, “Teaching: The Next Generation” from Third Way—a think tank that says its mission is to advance moderate policy and political ideas—high-performing college students see teaching as not only a career path with a salary dead-end, but as a last resort profession for underachieving students.

Authors of the report, Tamara Hiler and Lanae Erickson Hatalsky, polled 400 high-performing (with GPAs of B+ or higher) college students to get their views on the teaching profession—and what it might take to entice them into becoming teachers themselves.

As EdCentral says, “The results are challenging.”

(Next page: The report’s findings)

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