Sunday, February 26, 2012

Punishing Experience



When I was in PR, one of the biggest complaints from clients was getting the swap: They'd get a pitch by a firm VP / senior counselor - and then have their account passed down to a fresh college grad for the actual campaign work. This was upsetting because, generally, experience is a good thing.

Only in the bizarro world of education, where so many things are so often backwards, is experience viewed as a bad thing.

No, that's not quite correct: Educators recognize the obvious advantages to experience; it's the arm chair experts and paid pundits who always seem to know better.
From an article I read today:

"It (the North Carolina system) rewards longevity and credentialing. While we like to think an experienced teacher is a better teacher, it is not necessarily so. There is no research that cites longevity as a component of effective teaching or student achievement."

I'm not aware of studies proving senior PR counselors are better than junior ones, either.

I tore my chest muscle from the bone two years ago, while working out. My first question for the surgeon was, "How many of these repairs have you done?"

He replied several, at which point I sat back and thought, "Wow - I don't trust him. Is there an intern or fresh college grad who can give this surgery a shot?"

There's a healthy dose of sarcasm in this post, because it's helping me cope with frankly what is such a ridiculous concept. To doubt experience defies both logic and common sense.

I'm not calling the author of the quote I cite above as misinformed, please don't misunderstand me. His credentials, and the conservative think tank at which he works, appear impressive. I would have felt a lot better about his article if it had been written by an intern, that's all.

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