The world is changing and so are its schools. In recognition of the need to prepare students for an evolving and increasingly interconnected world, a growing number of countries have remodeled their education systems to deliver an education built for the 21st century, producing higher achievement and greater equity than the U.S.
How are they doing it?
Among the strategies these systems have pursued, none have been more important than the policies they have developed to ensure that high-quality teaching takes place in every classroom, in every school, for every child.
Empowered Educators is a landmark, international comparative study of teacher and teaching quality in the world’s top-performing education systems.
With the support of the Center on International Benchmarking at the National Center on Education and the Economy, one of the world’s preeminent education researchers, Linda Darling-Hammond launched the work from the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE) at Stanford University. Darling-Hammond, now leading the Learning Policy Institute (LPI) in Palo Alto, CA, drew together a global team of education researchers in the three-year study, producing unparalleled insights for U.S. educators, researchers and policymakers.
The researchers investigated seven jurisdictions across four continents. Their findings reveal two principle answers to the central question of how other countries have surpassed the U.S. in preparing their students to compete in the 21st century global economy:
The centerpiece of the study, Empowered Educators: How High-Performing Systems Shape Teaching Quality Around the World from Jossey-Bass publishers, is a cross-cutting analysis of all seven systems. Also from Jossey-Bass are five e-books offering deep dives into each jurisdiction studied.
For policymakers and researchers, CIEB and NCEE is proud to host a series of in-depth policy and country briefs as well as a rich online resource library featuring interviews with international education leaders and original tools and documents from the countries studied.
"For the last decade countries have looked beyond their borders through the findings of the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) for evidence of effective policy and practice. The findings of this new study have gone deeper to provide new insights from seven top-performing education systems on preparing and recruiting teachers, and supporting their professional development. Empowered Educators is a valuable toolkit for educators and state leaders to improve the quality of teaching."
"Linda Darling-Hammond has given us a window into the history of “how” successful systems around the world have built the conditions for accomplished teaching and accomplished practice. She makes clear which organizations should work together to implement the changes necessary to make teaching a true profession. The book also helps clarify how to establish a coherent career continuum for teachers, back-mapped from a set of standards of what teachers should know and be able to do to assure the public that all students across the country have access to an accomplished educator. Only once we act upon the conditions Darling-Hammond outlines will we have the great schools our students and communities deserve. Policymakers and all education professionals can learn a great deal from the pages of this text."
"By distilling approaches from high-performing education systems into ten themes, Empowered Educators provides a usable framework for thinking systemically about ensuring all schools have great teachers. Both policy makers and practitioners can use the system snapshots of success to reinforce their current policy agenda when it aligns as well as to push for further change when current practice and best practice diverge. The stakes have never been higher for ensuring student success, and Empowered Educators is a timely resource."
"Educator expertise and professionalism are the backbone of our educational system. Empowered Educators is a timely and important cross-cultural examination of the approaches educational systems use to promote and enhance the professionalization of the educator workforce. This volume is a valuable resource for system leaders and policy makers."
"Empowered Educators supports the notion that quality education cannot happen in a vacuum, and that academic success does not occur—on a large scale—in environments where punishment and mistrust are prevalent. We know from experience that effective educators develop in contexts where policymakers, practitioners and communities work together to uplift the profession and function in the best interest of students. NEA believes educators are empowered when their expertise is cultivated through mentorship, their schools operate with policies that are conducive to equity and collaboration, and our profession is shown the respect it deserves."