Being a good teacher is a work in progress:
With the help of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, the Asheville City Schools Foundation has provided more than $100,000 in the last four years for teacher development. Kate Pett is executive director of the Foundation. She says professional development is important to help teachers keep pace with the changing demands of students and the economy.
This also highlights one of the ideological flaws of our current Legislature: They claim our public schools aren't as effective as they should be, yet they cut funding for teacher development, which has been proven to enhance effectiveness. Either they don't know what they're doing, or they're trying to make their faulty assessment come true.
According to the Asheville City Schools Foundation, 92 percent of the Fellows felt their projects have empowered them in the classroom. Pett says in addition to increasing teachers' knowledge, the fellowships increase morale.
"One of the most important strategies to ensure that great teachers stay in the classroom is to provide them with ongoing professional development. It allows students to learn more and makes teachers feel more successful."
We don't have the time or the digital column space to adequately expose how much of an asset the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation is to the citizens of our state. Let's just say our future would be considerably darker in its absence.