Saturday, January 19, 2019

Why TFA Doesn't Get More Edu-respect

The title of the article is "I Switched Jobs 4 Times--Each With A $20,000 Bump." It is part of the series "My 6-Figure Paycheck."

This article is a quick interview with a Head of Talent Acquisition in San Francisco who currently makes $117,000 for a salary. She went to UC Berkeley for poli sci and then picked up a masters in project management from Northeastern, and her interview includes this paragraph:

In hindsight I am so glad I decided to take a 'detour' and do Teach For America. It changed my career trajectory for the better, and I’m a very happy and fulfilled person now because of that decision.

She did that for two whole years (8th grade English) and then worked as a "recruiter finding teachers for low-income communities" which sounds suspiciously like a TFA recruitment job. She did that for two years as well, then moved on.

I'm sure that the eighth graders she taught and the teachers who helped her get through those two years (which had to be tough, because 8th grade English is tough) are happy that they served as a useful detour in building her career and helping her reach her maximum earning potential, though as far as being "passionate" about her work, she says this:

It is a passion, but it's not my only passion. I think the pressure to be passionate about your work above all else is so draining — it should be fine if your job is good enough.

Good lord. The classic Onion piece on TFA was only slightly more obnoxious, and it was satire.

If TFAers ever wonder why actual teachers don't give them more respect (though I doubt that most of TFA's leadership cares about the respect of people that they themselves have little respect for), this piece would be a clue. Teach for Awhile. TFA as a resume builder. Students and classrooms existing only to provide the TFAer with a life experience. It's all here.

Oh, and our successful six-figure former faux teacher? She's 27.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, this is a job that you can just basically walk in off the street and perform at a high level dealing with children's lives and futures and then say, time for a change of scenery? I did my job change into teaching twenty one years ago and I still believe I am learning and becoming better. Would love to see what her two year learning curve looked like.