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APPENDIX G STRATEGIES FOR IMPLEMENTING REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS The committee cannot provide a complete blueprint or cost estimate for implementing the many recommendations in its report, but it describes here in rough terms the costs of implementing several components. We have chosen three examples and have explored them incompletely. The numbers used are based on assumptions and approximations gleaned from the literature and discussions with individuals involved in such activities. Inservice Activities The goal of new inservice activities is to reach as many science teachers as possible through useful and relevant programs and to sustain their involvement throughout their careers. We have tried to approximate the cost of engaging 27,000 biology teachers (75% of the estimated 37,000 biology teachers*) in various inservice activities over a number of years. Each inservice activity is unique, and its costs pertain to numerous compo- nents, including the type of activity, instructors (level of expertise and number of staff involved), participant costs (various combinations of stipends, travel, and accommodations), supplies, equipment and other costs directly related to the activity, and indirect costs, which depend on the type of institution supporting the activity. Actual costs, therefore, might be considerably more or less than the estimates derived here. We reviewed 20 National Science Foundation programs for biology-teacher enhancement on which relevant cost data were available (NSF, 1989~. We calculated the average cost of inservice programs at $290 per teacher per day (in average 1989 dollars). We assumed that 75% of biology teachers would participate in inser- vice activities. That percentage is considerably higher than the percentage of teachers who currently participate in inservice activities, but we expect that the development of new inservice activities will lead many more teachers to participate. We also assumed that most new inservice activities would be set up to run for 2 workweeks (10 days) and be followed by two followup seminars for a total of 12 days. (We also envision, however, that many other variations will develop.) The following example illustrates the cost if 27,000 teachers participate in 12-day inservice activities that will scale up as new institutes offering summer inservice are developed over a 4-year period. *Based on National Science Teachers Association and National Association of Biology Teachers estimates. 141
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142 APPENDIX G 25% of teachers in first year: $290 x 6,750 teachers x 12 days = $23.5 million S0% of teachers in second year: $290 x 13,500 teachers x 12 days = $47.0 million 75% of teachers in third year: $290 x 20,250 teachers x 12 days = $70.5 million 100% of teachers in fourth year: $290 x 27,000 teachers x 12 days = $94.0 million TOTAL: $235 million over 4 years for 75% of biol- ogy teachers to attend inservice activities In this case, the estimated cost at steady state for this program would be about $94 million per year in average 1989 dollars. It is important to note that the total approximate cost derived in this example is not considered to be a one-time expenditure. Teachers, both new and experienced, must participate in inservice activities annually throughout their careers. Funds must be provided through federal and other sources to develop, sustain, and evaluate these activities. If inservice activities were expanded in length and extended to all science teachers, the costs would, of course, increase proportionally. If the goals described in this report are to be met, many new programs must be developed for teachers in the work force today, as well as for those who will enter the teaching profession in the future. Mentors The attrition rate among high-school science teachers (i.e., teachers not teaching science after 3 years) is 15% (Weiss, 1989, pp. 49-50, graph 37~. On the basis of National Science Teachers Association and National Association of Biology Teachers estimates of nearly 37,000 biology teachers in the United States, approximately 5,550 new biology teachers are needed every 3 years. If, for example, one mentor teacher were assigned to two new biology teachers, there would be a need for 925 mentor teachers each year. We made several assumptions about the costs of a mentor program: . The average salary for a mentor teacher is $35,000. · Mentor teachers will spend 20% of their time in mentoring activities (0.2 x $35,000 = $7,000). The annual cost nationally would be approximately $6.5 million per year if each new teacher is to have a mentor for one year. This type of activity, however, is anticipated to occur in perpetuity, so budgets would need to be increased to reflect this recurrent cost. And, because science departments in most schools are too small to have two new biology teachers at once, perhaps a mentor teacher could be used by several schools or in some instances even by an entire school district. A number of variations on this theme are available; but the important element is to ensure that mentor teachers are available as resources to assist novice teachers in their critical first few years of teaching.
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APPENDIX G 143 The preceding example does not address the costs of using mentor teachers to retrain "burned out" veteran teachers; to accomplish that goal, an even larger number of mentor teachers will be needed. Fellowships for Teacher Education The committee has recommended a competitive national fellowship to attract some of the most able biology or elementary-education majors to science teaching (see Chapter 6~. In addition to attracting to the teaching profession bright and able students from liberal-arts colleges and universities that do not have traditional education programs, such a program might be of immense help in attracting members of minority groups that are underrepresented in the teaching force-people for whom the added expense of additional course work to become teachers would act as a disincentive. As noted in the report, fellowships could be awarded both to students and to those who plan to make a career change. Participating institutions must have shown interest and imagination in addressing the kinds of changes that are required in preservice education. An example of such a commitment would be a program in which a "science-methods" course would truly integrate science and pedagogy. Optimally, an institution that would participate in fellowship programs would: Be a research university with an accredited school of education. · Have evidenced active collaboration between faculty of science depart- ments and education departments. · Have developed (or be planning to develop) distinct science-methods courses for future biology teachers. · Emphasize approaches to science education that link content with pedagogical techniques. Few institutions today would have all these characteristics. Criteria for selection of students must be developed. Gifted students who have expressed an interest in teaching biology would be particularly desirable. Some imagination will be required on the part of institutions, if they are to develop fellowship programs that will attract the brightest and ablest students to the teaching profession. If, initially, 50 fellowships per year were awarded, the total annual cost would be $1 million plus the indirect costs, which would be different in each institution. If successful, the program should be expanded to service many more students with a proportionally higher cost. A fellowship would last for 1 year, at a cost per year of $20,000, including tuition. That cost might seem high, but one must consider that the types of students that such a program would try to attract could just as easily accept positions in other fields with much higher starting salaries. The small number of institutions that would be eligible to accept fellows, given the criteria set out above, might turn out to be the rate-limiting factor in attracting the ablest students. That is, not enough programs would be available.
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Representative terms from entire chapter: