I wrote in my last Editor’s letter (“Honor Thy Teacher,” Nov. 3) about the vital role teachers play. Recognizing and rewarding great teachers should be a national priority. Union leaders, however, are charging that by writing about legal efforts to remove bad teachers from classrooms, with the cover line “Rotten Apples,” TIME has insulted all teachers; some of them have launched protests and petition drives. In fact, TIME has nothing but admiration for America’s dedicated teachers and their commitment to excellence. We view education as crucial to America’s success, and it concerns me if teachers who have not had a chance to read our coverage have heard it mischaracterized.
Our mission is to spur discussion of important issues, and in the interest of an informed debate, I am making the story free for all readers on TIME.com, (time.com/teachers), so everyone can judge for themselves. I also invited union leaders, students, parents, teachers and administrators to share their views. Many factors play a role in student success, which ensures that there are many views and agendas at play in the debate over school reform. Visit time.com/teachertenure to read their responses.
Nancy Gibbs, EDITOR
This appears in the November 10, 2014 issue of TIME.