New York, NY – New York’s school system needs to be prepared for a new economy, says a report by the state’s top education experts.
In a report released on Wednesday, the New York State Education Association (NYSEA) called on state education officials to develop a “school curriculum” to help students prepare for a job in the workforce.
“The New York state public school system has a long history of producing teachers that are excellent teachers,” said NYSEA President Jennifer Gannon.
“But now that we have a new workforce, we need to make sure that we do everything possible to prepare our students to succeed in this new economy.”
Gannon said the report focuses on the New Orleans schools, where there has been a surge in new charter schools.
New Orleans was one of the first cities in the US to adopt charter schools, and has seen a large influx of new charter school students.
New York City has also seen a surge of new private charter schools in recent years, which have been blamed for a surge that has seen the number of students attending private schools nearly double in the past two years.
New Yorkers should be prepared to work in a new economic landscape and should have a basic understanding of how the new economy will work and what the challenges will be, Gannon said.
“I think that’s really the main focus of this report,” she said.
“We want to make it clear that it’s really about preparing students for a workforce.”
The report also found that teachers are a critical component of the New Yorker education system.
“Teachers have been a critical element of our school system since its inception,” said Gannon, adding that teachers have been essential to the school system’s success.
Gannon also called for more public funding to be allocated to teachers in New York.
Teachers will now have to compete for the same amount of public funding as other public employees, but the funding will be directed towards teacher training and mentoring, Gannons report said.
New teachers will have to be able to demonstrate “their value to the system”, the report said, as well as “their ability to work with diverse students” and “their knowledge of New York City’s culture, its history and its people”.
“This is a new education system,” Gannon told Al Jazeera.
“It’s not a model that’s been successful before.
It’s a model we’re going to have to work on, not just with teachers but with our schools, with our teachers, to really ensure that we’re not just looking at our teachers and saying ‘OK, we’ll pay them to be teachers’,” she said, adding: “And we’re also going to pay our teachers to be experts in their field.”
Gannons assessment of the new workforce also found many teachers were “bored”, with many leaving their jobs for other careers.
“We know from experience in New Orleans that people leave the school to pursue other careers,” Gannon said.