@TeachForAmerica Airlines: Fly Us! We Build Plane in Air

“I fly a lot,” he says. “Let’s say you go to the airport and you have a choice of three different pilots. One has trained for 30 hours online, the second has five weeks in the summer, and the third has studied, become certified and has spent a year as an intern. Which airplane would you choose?”

From For Teachers, Many Paths Into The Classroom … Some Say Too Many at NPR.org

So I asked major airlines on Twitter if they would hire pilots without a license or experience, but who were very intelligent. Here is what they told me.Screen Shot 2014-09-07 at 2.43.36 PM

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Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 10.23.13 AMScreen Shot 2014-09-07 at 2.43.56 PM

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So there you have it. Could the airlines have said it any better? If I want to be a pilot for a major airline, well, being bright, uncertified and lacking training just won’t work out for me. Unless of course I want to fly for Teach For America Airlines.

So JCrew has apparently has a new t-shirt contest open only to students of Teach For America teachers. I know that I am not qualified to enter the contest because I am not the lucky student of a Teach for America corp member. 2014-09-08 21.02.48Damn. But I do have some ideas for JCrew. Here are my potential entries.


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When I was conducting the background work on Twitter for this post, someone said that equating teaching to flying a plane wasn’t a good metaphor. I am more focused on the training and experience before you enter the cockpit/classroom, rather than the pedagogy and curriculum, but I thought it would be interesting to gauge classroom teacher’s opinion on the metaphor. So I asked Kenneth J. Holzapfel, Missouri Teacher of the Year. He commented

I think it would be the equivalent of having to pilot several different planes built by several different countries, with directions on the controls printed in various languages. The landscape in American Public Schools can be very diverse.

Fly Teach For America Airlines. We build the plane in the air.

For all of Cloaking Inequity’s posts on Teach For America click here. Look for the post from my former UT-Austin undergraduate student about her experience in Teach For America.

Have you heard about that “undeniable” evidence of “positive” impact of Teach For America? Read this and this and this.

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Twitter: @ProfessorJVH

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p.s. For the inevitable Teach For America cheerleaders and supporters. This is humor. Satire. Relax and watch John Stewart have a little fun with Senator Lindsay Graham here.



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