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Beyond Master's Degrees

Bill Ferriter agrees heartily with Bill Gates that teacher qualilty should be based on actual effectiveness rather than academic credentials:

Our commitment as a profession to master's degrees as a form of identifying--and then differentiating pay for--accomplished teachers has simply outlived its usefulness. While there may have been a time when elevating the academic accomplishments of classroom teachers served to elevate the profession in the eyes of critics and to elevate the qualifications of those who'd chosen to spend their careers in the classrooms, differentiating pay for master's degrees at this point is an inefficient and under-informed practice.

At same time, though, he hopes the software-billionaire-turned-education-activist understands that teachers' effectiveness cannot be adquately judged by their impact on standardized tests: "Dozens of other factors influence a student's performance in any given year."

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