The National Science Teachers' Association took an informal survey of members to gather opinions about the status of science education. The results are not really surprising to me, except for 2 things:
(1) Many science teachers want a national curriculum (53%). Is this a function of lack of access to curricular materials at the local level, or do teachers really think that one curriculum would be helpful? I think that national curricula can be a good thing (for example, Advanced Placement), but I would have answered NO to a question suggesting ONE national curriculum, as this one did. But maybe this isn't what the surveyors had in mind.
(2) The 'ability to translate content into learning' is by far (60%) the most important quality of a science teacher, according to science teachers. In academic circles, this is known as Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK), something that I also believe is an incredibly important skill for science teachers. We need ed schools to take this more seriously.
Also of note are some science teacher demographics: 75% female, 86% white, and 29% have been teaching more than 20 years. Hmm. This may be saying more about the survey tool than the actual population of science teachers, but we could probably do a better job of recruiting science teachers...