WAMU 88.5 : The Kojo Nnamdi Show

A 'Bar Exam' For Teachers?

One of the country's largest teachers' unions is proposing rigorous new credentials for teachers, similar to the bar exam for lawyers. The American Federation of Teachers, or AFT, also supports the National Common Core State Standards, educational standards in English and math adopted by 46 states so far. We explore how organized labor is approaching education reform issues.

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Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, discussed the group's proposal to require incoming teachers to pass a rigorous bar-like certification exam. The training program would include a classroom practicum as well as a paper-and-pencil subject test. States could choose to adopt the national standards and offer reciprocity to out-of-state teachers, similar to the law profession. "We are trying to do the work you have to do to make a real profession so that there are high standards, that people are really prepared to meet those standards, and they get the tools and conditions they need," Weingarten said.

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A Modern 'Roots' For An American Society Still 'Based On The Color Line'

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'Sweetbitter' Is A Savory Saga Of Restaurant Life And Love

Oysters, cocaine, fine wine, love triangles: Stephanie Danler's debut novel Sweetbitter follows a year in the life of a young woman working at a top-tier Manhattan restaurant.
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Illinois General Assembly Works To Resolve Budget Impasse

Fallout continues from the standoff between the Republican governor and Democrats — focused heavily on the future of unions. And Tuesday is a key deadline to see if a resolution can be reached.
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After Breast Cancer Diagnosis, She Channeled Her Ups And Downs Into Texts

NPR's Scott Simon talks with Natalie Sun about her project, textingwithcancer.com. The website won a Webby award, and documents her pessimism and optimism while undergoing chemotherapy.

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