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Firing Bad Teachers: schools and churches

March 8, 2010

Why We Must Fire Bad Teachers

In no other profession are workers so insulated from accountability.

(http://www.newsweek.com/id/234590)

I read this article with a strange curiosity. After ten years working in K-12 public education and having received a great deal of education myself I have a heart that aches for good teaching, strong accountability, and the empowerment of our students. I have worked in student ministry for over 20 years and long to see them equipped, led, trained, and empowered to do all they are capable.

The article has the premise that no other profession is so isolated from accountability, but I would throw in one other occupation, leadership in the Christian church. We train leaders through seminary and bible college, and some leaders have further training and accountability through denominations or support networks, but the question I would pose is if we are doing enough.

Bill Gates foundation recently invested $335 million in a project to improve teaching quality.  He said, ‘Unfortunately, it seems the field doesn’t have a clear view of what characterizes good teaching,’ Gates said. ‘I’m personally very curious.'”

If our educational system does not even have a definition of good teaching, does the church?

Every weekend across the world leaders are standing before groups of people trying to teach them, but is it quality? It is changing lives? Is it furthering the Gospel?

How do we determine if pastor’s are teaching well? If they are covering the content correctly?

How do we know that a church is teaching the truth? What accountability exists if they are not?

If we were to develop a method of professional accountability and support what might it look like? How could it be administered? How are our leaders discipled and guided so they are up to date with the changing times and needs of our world?

Two of the greatest organizations and pillars of our society, schools and churches are at a pivotal time of crises and a need for change. There is a call for teachers to be held to a standard and held accountable for the leadership they provide for our students.

Is it time to make that same call for church leaders?

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