Stopping the Brain Drain of Skilled Veteran Teachers: Retaining and Valuing their Hard-Won Experience by William L. Fibkins, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Stopping the Brain Drain of Skilled Veteran Teachers: Retaining and Valuing their Hard-Won Experience

Stopping the Brain Drain of Skilled Veteran Teachers: Retaining and Valuing their Hard-Won Experience

by William L. Fibkins
     
 

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Veteran educators are being encouraged to take early retirement in order to create jobs for less-experienced, lower-paid novices. Veteran educators are not alone: early retirement promotions have become the norm for aging workers in America. Consequently, there is a brain-drain of skilled workers at the national, state, and local levels. The early retirement of

Overview

Veteran educators are being encouraged to take early retirement in order to create jobs for less-experienced, lower-paid novices. Veteran educators are not alone: early retirement promotions have become the norm for aging workers in America. Consequently, there is a brain-drain of skilled workers at the national, state, and local levels. The early retirement of our most talented veteran educators is leaving our schools without the necessary leadership, hard-earned experience, proven skills, and wisdom to meet the evolving challenges our country faces. Indeed, there are long-term consequences of losing skilled educators while they are in the prime of their professional lives. Addressing these concerns, this book challenges the “good news only" theory of early retirement promotions which suggest that veteran educators are no longer needed as they age and that their retirement is the only way schools can survive financially in times of economic uncertainty. This theory contends that everyone involved gets a reward: the novice educators get jobs and the veterans get some cash. This trade is seemingly no problem, until the veteran educators are out the door and the school staff, students, and parents are left without their steady guiding hands. Instead of hastily luring prime educators out the schoolhouse door with planned buyout promotions, schools should offer our most gifted veteran educators career alternatives that will encourage and reward them to remain on board, thereby allowing them to lead novice and mid-career staff, students, parents, and community members. Examining the negative consequences of early retirement promotions on school culture, administrative leadership, teacher and student performance, community reaction, Stopping the Brain Drain of Skilled Veteran Teachers will not only expose some of the major drawbacks of early buyouts of veteran educators, but will also suggest creative career alternative to keep such teachers on board.

Editorial Reviews

Paul Casciano
Dr. Fibkins understands the value of the influence experienced teachers have on their students, colleagues and the general culture of their schools. His candid and direct style is refreshing as he challenges the beliefs of those who strictly look at the 'bottom line' with budgets and do not consider the unanticipated consequences of their near-sighted planning. Dr. Fibkins makes it clear that eliminating your most knowledgeable teachers simply because they cost a district more money must not be a substitute for addressing ineffective teachers regardless of experience levels. He challenges our mental models about what is 'old' and offers insightful suggestions for changing our perspectives and practices, particularly those that, if left uncontested, will be diluting the quality of public education and other vital services.
Kenneth Guentert
Whoa! Why hasn't this book been published before? The preference for younger, inexperienced, and presumably less costly workers is well known to anyone older than 50 in the United States. It's a pity, especially in education, for all the reasons William Fibkins describes. His final chapter, suggesting that successful veteran teachers and administrators be enlisted as mentors to the less experienced and struggling, is win-win and ought to be implemented everywhere.
Alexander Rutherford
As a public school principal, and volunteer commissioner for a regional accreditation agency, I believe Dr. Bill Fibkins’s book shines an important light on a number of current school practices. These practices are designed to improve a school district’s financial bottom line with little concern for the serious impact these measures will have on raising or lowering overall student performance. Dr. Fibkins clearly identifies the pitfalls these practices create for new teachers, students and their parents. Dr. Fibkins’s thoughtful presentation of the facts and creative problem solving strategies offer a breath of fresh air to an American educational system struggling with increasing budgetary constraints and the constant imperative to improve every student’s achievement.
Martha M. Mobley
Fibkins writes of the national exodus of teachers and administrators from schools and districts, leaving behind an imbalance of professional experience and contextual history. His rational premise seems irrefutable in that there remains responsibility for skilled and willing educators to shape entry–level teachers and career changers as well as teach the next generation of school-age children and youth.

Admittedly, not every educator wants to continue working for that’s a personal decision; Dr. Fibkins addresses that topic, also. However, many do; and at one university are welcomed warmly in new capacities as supervisors, professional developers and PDS clinical instructors. Their skills and talents assist teacher candidates through the awkward and painful transition from student to professional. In addition, the hybrid role they play underlines their experiences, background history and interests as they strengthen bridges between the university and the public schools.
At the end of the day, this is the book to read if one recognizes the impact on students, schools, even the community when multiple educators leave at the same time. That seems to be where we are in the 21st century.

Teachers College Record
On the whole, the author makes some compelling arguments in this text.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781610483377
Publisher:
R&L Education
Publication date:
12/01/2011
Pages:
138
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.13(h) x 0.31(d)

What People are saying about this

Martha M. Mobley
Fibkins writes of the national exodus of teachers and administrators from schools and districts, leaving behind an imbalance of professional experience and contextual history. His rational premise seems irrefutable in that there remains responsibility for skilled and willing educators to shape entry–level teachers and career changers as well as teach the next generation of school-age children and youth.

Admittedly, not every educator wants to continue working for that’s a personal decision; Dr. Fibkins addresses that topic, also. However, many do; and at one university are welcomed warmly in new capacities as supervisors, professional developers and PDS clinical instructors. Their skills and talents assist teacher candidates through the awkward and painful transition from student to professional. In addition, the hybrid role they play underlines their experiences, background history and interests as they strengthen bridges between the university and the public schools.

At the end of the day, this is the book to read if one recognizes the impact on students, schools, even the community when multiple educators leave at the same time. That seems to be where we are in the 21st century.

Meet the Author

William Fibkins is an author and consultant. His focus is on education reform, teacher retraining and mentoring, intervention on behalf of at-risk students and parents, reorganizing school counseling programs, and establishing a "Circle of Wellness" in schools in order to address student health and wellness issues.

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