Q&A Of The Day – Are Florida’s Teacher’s Qualified To Teach Civics (And Other Subjects)? Part 1
Each day I feature a listener question sent by one of these methods.
Parler & Twitter: @brianmuddradio
Today’s entry: How many teachers are qualified to teach the new Florida civics curriculum? Lol
Bottom Line: It’s a potentially sad but valid question. After all, if Florida’s teachers were adequately informed regarding civics, why was the Florida Education Association, which represents 78% of Florida’s public-school teachers, fighting the state over the rule change to ban critical race theory? After all, if one’s informed regarding American history, they would know the basis of CRT is untrue. I’ve not been able to find any accredited information pointing to answers regarding the level of civics proficiency of teachers, however I did find two other subjects that help provide a view of the likely as it pertains to our public-school teachers. Two subjects where credible research exists regarding teacher proficiency are financial literacy and English proficiency. First up, financial literacy.
FINRA produces the official financial literacy test (which is available for free to test yourself online). While we don’t know the results of teachers, who’ve taken the exam, a University of Wisconsin study of teachers revealed that only 20% of teachers were confident in their ability to teach financial literacy when introduced to it. Now granted, not all teachers are tasked with doing so but it’s instructive when only 1 in five of our educators feels confident in the ability to teach something as fundamental. There was another study of teachers which was more transparent. This one conducted of teachers regarding their command of the English language. The study, which put teachers through a series of exercises to determine English proficiency, ranked on a scale of 1-5 (with 1 being the worst and 5 being the best). Here are the results:
- Grammar: 2.42 (48% proficient)
- Vocabulary: 2.44 (49% proficient)
- Fluency: 2.65 (53% proficient)
I’m not trying to be an alarmist but that’s somewhat alarming isn’t it. Again, everyone isn’t an English teacher but that our teachers would generally have mediocre, at best, command of the language doesn’t instill confidence does it? Also, it’s fair to say that the more effective a communicator one is the more likely one is to effectively teach. I’ll pick up there in the second part of today’s Q&A.