Why Teaching is No Longer a Profession
What is a profession? Let’s start with that question. A profession is a field where the people who work inside it have advanced knowledge, high standards and a routine of continual improvement.
Let’s look at doctors first. Doctors have advanced knowledge of medicine, there are high standards set by the Medical Board and doctors are expected to keep up to date with the latest research and techniques.
Let’s look at lawyers next. Attorneys have advanced knowledge of the law, there are high standards set by the Bar Association and lawyers are expected to stay up to date on the changes to the law and recent court decisions.
Now let’s look at teachers. Teachers do not have advanced knowledge of teaching coming out of college. There are no standards set by the Teacher’s Union and although there is a legal mandate for teachers to stay up to date on current research and best practices — there is no place for teachers to access that information.
What Happened to Teaching?
When a teacher graduates from college they have a broad foundation of knowledge about how to be a teacher. In essence, they are ready to begin learning how to become a professional teacher.
It’s no different in medicine or law, when a doctor graduates medical school — they are not ready to be a fully licensed doctor. When someone graduates from law school, they are not ready to be a full-fledged practicing attorney.
Professions require time to practice, learn and grow.
But that’s not how teaching works in America. I have more than 20 years inside the K12 system. I started as a classroom teacher right out of college. Was I ready to teach? Yes, I knew the basics. Was I an expert? Not even close.
What’s happening in 2022 is the lack of professional guidance, support and standards is catching up to the K12 system. Sadly, any intelligent person could have seen this coming, and yet the K12 system and the Teacher’s Union did nothing to prevent it.
The Role of the Teacher’s Union
Teachers need a union.
You may not agree with that statement, but let me explain why a Teacher’s Union is required for teaching to become a true profession. Doctors have the Medical Board, attorneys have the Bar Association, what do teachers have?
The Teacher’s Union should be the professional equivalent of those two outstanding organizations, but it’s not. And that’s the problem.
Right now, there is no professional path to becoming an expert in teaching. The Teacher’s Union doesn’t keep track of the number of experts in the field. They don’t keep track of the number of teachers who need support and additional practice and coaching. The Teacher’s Union doesn’t provide professional development to its members.
In fact, teachers are 100% reliant on their own schools, districts and building principals to do right by them. And guess what? Most don’t do a very good job.
The Failure of Teacher Professional Development
I can speak honestly about this topic because I developed the most effective and successful Teacher training and development program in the country. Teachers who went through my 2-year formal Teacher Development Program came out experts in the end.
What do teachers receive around the rest of the country?
Most teachers are forced to attend professional development speakers, workshops and seminars that have marginal interest and low standards of professional growth. What can a teacher learn from professional development? The answer is unfortunately not much.
But the failure of professional development is the Teacher’s Union fault.
If the Teacher’s Union were to adopt my 2-year Teacher Development Program as the official professional support and guidance program for teachers — every teacher in America would be an expert in the classroom in only two years.
That means in two years, less teachers would feel burnt out, less teachers would be angry at the system, less teachers would feel the need to quit.
When teachers receive real support, real guidance and real professional development something amazing happens — they learn and grow and find fulfillment in the one job they always dreamed of doing.
What Can Teachers Do?
The harsh truth is there isn’t much a teacher can do about it. Although there are thousands of memes saying “Teachers Have a Voice” — the truth is teachers have no real voice.
Teachers must obey building principals. And the union leadership won’t even defend teacher working conditions.
That leaves only one solution.
In the 21st century, every teacher can create a social media account on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. And with that account, they can use the only power they have left — their “FOLLOW” button.
Teachers should not be using their social media to crusade against anyone. In most teacher contracts, your social media accounts can be used against you, as “conduct unbecoming” a teacher.
But no court of law will side with a district if you “FOLLOW” other accounts.
That’s your only power.
Who Should You Follow?
Over the last 18 months, I have been developing courses in all five essential 21st century skills. These skills help the average working citizen make more money and increase their power and influence.
The second skill is “Team Building.”
I have two accounts with the same username @theschooldoc on Twitter and Instagram. I am building a following on both to benefit teachers across the United States.
Here’s how you benefit from following me.
When my accounts grows past 1 million followers advertisers and sponsors will want to partner with me. My goal is to help teachers earn an extra $1000 to $10,000 a year without doing a lot of work for it.
The only way that can happen is if I create a Teacher Network on social media. If you are on Twitter or Instagram, if you follow me, you can decide to be part of this Teacher Network.
How Will the Teacher Network Make Easy Money for Teachers
One of the principles of Team Building is the power of collaboration. You can do more with a team than you can by yourself. That’s how teachers will be able to make an extra $1000 to $10,000 without selling lesson plans or staring a side hustle or taking a coaching position after school.
When my accounts grow past 1 million followers, anyone that opts-in the Teacher Network will also be eligible to make money from advertisers and sponsors that contact me.
It’s really that simple — Follow my accounts and help yourself at the same time.
Join the Teacher Facebook Group
Over the last decade, I have spoken with and interviewed more than 5000 teachers. And the consensus is that teachers are tired — all the time. “I get it” and I hear you.
That’s why I created the Teacher Facebook group. As you read in this article, there is no central resource for teachers to go to. Want to learn about lesson planning? There’s no where to go. Want to learn about student behavior? There’s no where to go.
Pick any topic important to teachers and THERE IS NO WHERE TO GO!
That’s why I started the Teacher Facebook group. Teachers have been joining over the last several weeks because there is NO WHERE ELSE to go for help, guidance and to ask questions. Join Here:
Leaf Academy FB Teacher H.Q. | Facebook
This private FB group is for teachers looking to connect, be empowered and get FREE starter kits, and answers to…
Inside the group, you can download five FREE teacher kits and also take four quizzes on lesson planning, student/teacher relationships and safe classrooms to test your knowledge.
About the Author:
D.Scott Schwartz, M.Ed. also known as “The School Doc” hosts a weekly LIVE podcast on Instagram called “Tuesdays with Schwartz.” He also does consulting work for schools and businesses. For more information go to the Leaf Academy website (link in bio.)