Monday, September 9, 2013

The attack on the Master's Degree requirement for teachers

Sent to the Baltimore Sun, Sept 9, 2013

"Md.'s teaching certification law (is) criticized as too tough" (Sept 6) announces that according to a think tank report, requiring a master's degree for teachers is causing a teacher shortage in "crucial subjects." But data presented in the second half of the article indicates that this isn't so: The Maryland State Education does not report significant shortages in these "crucial subjects," and Baltimore City and Baltimore County report few vacancies. I hope readers did not just scan the headline.

Also, the article's opening anecdote does not support the point: It is about a prospective teacher who got into the wrong master's program, not suited to his speciality. He clearly did not examine the college's catalog very carefully. This case has nothing to do with the issue of whether requiring a master's degree is causing a teacher shortage.

Stephen Krashen
Rossier School of Education
University of Southern California

Original article:,0,5261314.story

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