Thursday evening I was invited to hear Brett Wigdortz, Founder and CEO of Teach First, the UK-based partner of Teach for All (formerly Teach for America). The basic, very simplified premise is to get high potential women and men graduating from university to spend two years teaching in the classroom of a disadvantaged or low-income school. Many are spreading the model worldwide, and this year the first cohort of Teach for Bangladesh teachers are classrooms across Dhaka.
Teach First has achieved some amazing improvements in the education quality provided to low-income students, especially in London. Nationally they account for 2 out of every 7 teachers in low-income schools, and also have a number of alumni (they call them "ambassadors") as head teachers, and policy-makers. Teach First recently became one of the top recruiters of graduating university students in England. It's no wonder that the president of a British teacher college recently mentioned in a speech that Teach First has "detoxified the teaching profession" and made it an exciting option for many young adults.