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Survey: Educators Confident in Their Effectiveness, But Doubt Parents'

According to a report released yesterday by the School Improvement Network, an online professional development and teacher-training company, a majority of educator respondents asserted faith in their own educator effectiveness and that of their colleagues.

Of the over 2,100 educators polled nationally, 96 percent affirmed that they are effective educators, while 89 percent felt the same of their colleagues.

For all that confidence in teacher effectiveness, a narrow majority of respondents (52 percent) believed that the "public education system is failing." The high level of self-reported teacher effectiveness would suggest that this failure derives largely from forces outside the classroom.

"We are dedicated and motivated," noted one educator who was surveyed, "but it is very easy to lose hope without support from the public and our legislators."

Among the public from whom teachers might seek support are parents of school-aged children, a demographic that the teacher respondents largely agreed were not working hard enough. Only 11 percent of educators polled believed that parents are doing enough to help their children succeed in school.

"The government expects miracles from educators," observed one respondent, "when parents play the most vital role in a child's life and they are failing their children, our students."

These new findings add to a complex picture of American-teacher opinion painted by a series of overlapping national surveys. For all that teachers may feel secure in the knowledge of their own efficacy, they also report decreasing levels of job satisfaction (just not by all measures), but remain satisfied with their level of autonomy in the classroom (or maybe not). 

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