At the end of his guest column, Dick Dickinson asks: If military instructors maintain such a high morale while also educating their personnel effectively, why can’t civilian educators do the same? [“Reward teachers like military officers,” Opinion, July 17].
The answer is simple: Military personnel want to be there. They are all motivated, because they signed up for it. Intrinsic student motivation is the single greatest factor that determines student success. Not the teacher.
Since this cannot be said of all public school students, the comparison is invalid. This continuing quest of some to try to reinvent the teaching profession just distracts us from the work we already know we need to do.
Arbitrary numbers like firing the “bottom” 5 percent each year, however vaguely this is defined, would do nothing to help this.
Dan Magill, Seattle