And there’s a nice Statistics lesson on “average vs mean vs median”, to boot!
Here’s a cool one from the NY Times:
You get to draw a line/curve on a graph,2 and then see how well you did versus the rest of the general population.
This one would be a good exercise one for my statistics classes. Seven questions, mostly choosing graphs.
- For the record, I scored 3 out of 7…↩︎
There seem to have been a number of pieces in the media1 in the past year regarding the drop of enrollment in teacher preparatory programs, but the following caught my attention for a couple of reasons — one in that it’s from Nate Silver’s Five Thirty Eight:2
As almost anyone will attest — myself certainly included — we need more good teachers in the field — not fewer. Which is why the following excerpts tugged a bit:
The drop could be a holdover from the recession . . . [E]ducation budget cuts nationwide, both during and after the recession, left a bad taste in many prospective teachers’ mouths.
Mmmmmmmmm hmmmmmmm — but take it from me, that bad taste was not limited to the mouths of merely prospective teachers.3
“In Texas, around 2011, there was a lot of negative press around teaching,” said Michael Marder, the executive director of UTeach, a teacher preparation program that was founded at the University of Texas at Austin and has expanded to 44 universities in 21 states. “Students were going off on field visits and saying that their mentor teachers were upset, that pink slips were being handed out in anticipation of budget cuts. It left a strong impression.”
Yup. Spring of 2011. I don’t believe that we’ll ever be able to properly quantify the amount damage done to the teaching profession as a result of the political standoff that season. Personally, I’ll never be able to forget the incensed feeling I had when I realized that with 4 full years of experience,4 my job was still potentially on the chopping block.5 Ultimately, my job ended up being safe, but I remember telling myself that I otherwise would have said “peace out” and never looked back at the profession.6
There is one slippery hill that this article glances upon:
How do you even qualify/quantify one as a “good” teacher? That is again, a discussion for another day7
- Among others, from Education Week and NPR↩︎
- Another is that it features input from a former UTeach instructor, Dr. Michael Marder↩︎
- The title of this post is in reference to the “Rainy Day Fund”, which was of no small significance four years ago.↩︎
- and it was four-plus years of hard work.↩︎
- It was “last-in, first out” — the newest teachers would be the first to get cut. The only criteria for determining who to cut was years of experience. That’s it. It’s been a full four years now, and I can still taste the stink.↩︎
- Merely out of spite.↩︎
- perhaps the “end-of-all-days”.↩︎
From the LA Times:
This is something people should be talking about. Screw the blue & black — or white & gold — dress nonsense. Girl Scout cookies actually matter.
Side note: Samoas have more calories and more fat than Caramel deLites?! My life will never be the same…
Eye opening. Not necessarily an indicator of what actually happened this past weekend1 but eye opening, nonetheless.
If you’re too lazy to read, here’s the infographic for you TL;DR’ers:2