DISD's Miles describes challenges for educators

Jan 14, 2014

Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles visited the Texas A&M University-Commerce campus on Jan. 14 to make a presentation on topics affecting educators in the information age.

"We need to think hard today about what kids will need most in the year 2025," Miles said. "And we need to so that now so that we invest properly in our kids."

Miles addressed and took questions from about 30 faculty from the College of Education and Human Services and other faculty and staff. Miles also met with university officials including President Dan R. Jones, Provost Adolfo Benavides and Director of Media Relations Noah Nelson.

"The meaning of knowing has shifted from being able to remember and repeat information," Miles said. "Now the goal is helping students develop the intellectual tools and learning strategies. Not what kids know, but how they learn."

Miles described the challenges educators and institutions face in order to prepare students for the demands of the 21st century labor market. Miles said that today’s employers seek skills such as information literacy and critical thinking that are not traditional subject areas in secondary education. 

Miles also described the "Teacher Excellence Initiative" being implemented at DISD, which measures teachers using a system based on performance and achievement and also includes student surveys. 

Miles took the reins at the Dallas school district in 2012, following a stint in a similar role at a Colorado Springs, Colo., school district. A veteran of both the U.S. Army's Ranger Battalion and the U.S. Department of State, Miles has described himself as a "reformer" in education.