Those wondering what public school teachers do all day are going to get an answer.
Tucked deep in Washington’s new two-year budget is money for a study to find out what a “typical work day” looks like for thousands of teachers toiling away in the state’s 295 school districts.
Lawmakers specifically want “an estimate of the percent of a teacher’s typical day that is spent on teaching-related duties and the percentage of the teacher’s day that is spent on duties that are not directly related to teaching.”
They’ve asked Central Washington University’s respected College of Education and Professional Studies to figure it out for a paltry $25,000.
Researchers there intend to use much of the next school year to collect details of teachers’ daily lives in small, medium and large schools in all corners of the state.
Using logs, surveys, interviews or other means, they will try to reveal how teachers pass the hours, a subject of much debate in an unending political inquest of public education.
“It’s an old question that no one has ever answered with data,” said Linda Schactler, director of public affairs for the Ellensburg-based university. “We’ve answered it with anecdotes. We think we know but we haven’t actually done the research.” More…