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The teacher is a central organ of the education system. The government legislation of ‘No Child Left Behind (NCLB) ‘policy has seen the revolution in the teaching profession, with great performance being expected from a teacher in all aspects. The rise of neoliberalization perpetuated by this policy has given the aspiring and teaching professionals a food for thought
According to the No Child Left Behind reforms policy, teachers are required to deliver quality service in their line of duty. Concerns in the past, were that teachers were underperforming. This was characterized by relative dismal performance by students across all districts. As a result, it led to the coming into place of the reforms which advocate for neoliberalization in the education sector. The introduction of standardized test scores in place of teacher-generated assessments has piled more pressure on the teacher to deliver much more as far as the performance of the student is concerned. The resulting consequences of the implementation of the reforms have since seen the demand for teacher service chatter delivery under check. Therefore, the teacher is left with a heavy task of ensuring a smooth run of the school system. As a result, it has become the responsibility of the teacher to ensure that the student get knowledge and skills that will equip them to become the best learners and eventually make them productive and responsible citizens.
As a teacher it is you are also up to task to ensure that you act with due professionalism in the line of duty. At school set up the teacher bestowed with the responsibility of being the secondary parents. Therefore, parents expect the teachers to be as professional as possible in molding the behavior of the child since most of the time is spent with the teacher. Also as a teacher, you are expected to meet the desired ethical standards of behavior in and out of school. Parents always insist that children look at their teachers as role models first. Hence, it becomes the responsibility of the teacher to be as ethical as possible. Under the No Child Left Behind policy, the bar has been raised on the level of professionalism and ethics a teacher should attain. This means, any mediocre behavior is not tolerated at all. Which has since then seen many teachers who do not meet the standards or who violate the rules of conducts, lose their jobs. With the ascension of the standardized test scores, a teacher has the responsibility of ensuring parents are satisfied with the performance of their kids. As such, a teacher is constantly on check for up to date performance or service delivery.
Teachers are also accountable to the learning community. They are responsible to fellow teachers, school administrators, subordinate staff and their employers or rather the school district. The laws, rules and regulations that act as a framework through which the teacher is mandated to practice, act as the guidelines through which the employer and the teacher interact. With the neo liberalization policies in place, a teacher is expected to cooperate fully by abiding to these rules to the letter. For instance, the performance based on standardized test scores requires that all teachers work together to ensure that their school pass the required mark (Jeffrey, 2002). Hence, each and every teacher is accountable for the final performance of the school by all standards. Teachers are also required to foster good relationships with members of the school community from administrators to subordinate staff and their employers. In additional, teachers are also bestowed with the task of educating the future generation of mature men and women who believe in the values of US society.
Curriculum and the organization of school are the basic foundation of education. Therefore, it is essential for a teacher to have a good understanding of the same in order to be effective in the profession. Education in the United States is largely funded by the public sector that is the local, state and federal government. Education is universal, that is, it is available for all. Funding, employment, teaching and the entire school curriculum are under the local government while the state governments are involved with the standardized testing or evaluation of performance. There is a considerable variation of Curriculum from district to district in the United States. Different schools offer a range subjects and is characterized by varied quality. However, the mandate of the No Child Left Behind Act has since ensured a relevant balance through standardized testing. For a teacher, it is more than necessary to understand the system of education and be always updated on new acts or laws on Education Sector.
Another aspect of foundation of education is the administration of schools. It is important for a teacher to be well versed with the administration system of education in the school system. This helps in understanding the chain of command. As a result, less or no problems in management related issues arise. In the United States, the School Boards act as the main administration figure. They have the mandate to manage public primary and secondary schools. Members of the school board are elected by the public since the taxpayers fund these schools. Otherwise, those schools that are not funded by the taxpayers are not under the jurisdiction of the school boards. It is also vital for every teacher to have a good understanding of administrative issues in order to be an effective professional.
Policy development in education is another issue of foundation of education that a teacher should be well versed with. For instance, the enactment of No Child Left Behind policy came into practice at the start of President Obama regime. This policy should be understood by stakeholders, especially the teachers. Such legislation should be understood to the detail by the teacher in order to align to the requirements of the law. With the rise of neo liberalization policies, there has been an outcry from stakeholders for the need of review of the policies that have seen the ‘privatization’ of public schools. This and many other developments will see the dynamic changes in the education sector from time to time. For this reason, there is a need for teachers to familiarize themselves with the most current policies.
Last but not least, teachers should have basic understanding of compensation performance evaluation. A teacher who has no knowledge of how much he or she should be compensated is as good as ineffective. There is need of revised remuneration from time to time. It has been effective for teachers to negotiate for this through unions. Hence, every teacher should understand their rights to facilitate compensation for an equal job done. No Child Left Behind policy has resulted in the layoff of teachers in the underperforming schools. Therefore the need of unionized profession has been inevitable.
In conclusion, teaching career requires dedication and professionalism of the highest order. This is because the teacher is mandated to guide students to become the best resource and a value added to future society. As a result, he or she is accountable to the society of the present and future. The foundations of educations that are vital in molding an effective teacher should not go without mention. Good understanding of the curriculum, the existing education policies and administrative structure of schools being the main issues. This summed up will help achieving efficiency and desired professionalism in teaching.