What is Teaching Matters and Why I Support Their Mission

May 01, 2020

I believe that education is everything, and that our system needs help. Teaching Matters is a private organization working to “close the education opportunity gap across zip codes”.

There are many organizations and philanthropic institutions that are interested in improving the educational system of our country. Many great ideas are effective and yet have limited impact because the financial, political and organizational challenges are immense. Many of the most effective programs function alongside or outside of the public school paradigm, like the many excellent charter schools. Those ideas that try to address the system from within are drowned in a quagmire of politics. Even Bloomberg could not crack the Teacher’s Union in NYC.

It seems that the system that serves most of our children is un-fixable. And yet, here in New York City, a small private organization is creating real change with results that can be quantified and verified. Here is the real kicker: they are doing it WITHIN the public school system. And with public administrators’ BUY IN and SUPPORT. Let me reiterate: The PUBLIC SCHOOLS are being made more effective in teaching reading and math with private funds. The scores are going up.

How does Teaching Matters do this? It does this by teaching TEACHERS to be more effective and up to date. It seems that empowering and educating the teachers causes the students scores to go up. It also increases loyalty and job satisfaction so that good teachers stay in marginalized zip codes. The teachers feel they are supported and are grateful to be given better tools. Someone is helping them with the extremely difficult task of educating a room of 30 kids.

There is much to be done and much to improve but both the economics and the ability to effect change on a grand nationwide scale is inherent in the Teaching Matters model. Scores are driven by quality teaching. Teaching Matters addresses this reality by responding to specific challenges in individual zip codes, without threat to the establishment.

I am proud to support them in their mission. And I am equally proud of the impressive level of funding they have been given by extremely discerning institutions. Well Done!

It is so heartening that Teaching Matters has stepped in during the covid-19 school shutdown and has had nationwide impact by developing easily accessible online learning for all grades, and even for children who only have access to a phone.

Last year I went on a school visit to a New York City grammar school supported by Teaching Matters. Many of the children were coming to school from homeless shelters. It was an eye-opening experience. The children were clean, eager for attention and mostly interested in their teacher’s words. But there were 30 children, one blackboard screen and one teacher: Just too many kids. In an environment like that, technique is everything. I saw first hand what a difficult task the teachers face. The teachers were so hard working, caring and really hoped to see results for their efforts. Teaching Matters, they said, gave them tools. I could see the pride on their faces. It was their win that the students’ scores had gone up. It was their accomplishment. And that pride, optimism and hope was transferred to the students.

Yes we can fit it.

For the month of May, you will receive 20% off any purchase and we will donate 10% of all sales to support Teaching Matters. Shop and Support Public School Remote Learning

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