I really hate the "teachers need to be held accountable" argument.
To what, exactly, are you planning to hold me accountable?
You see, I go to work every day and spend at least eight hours in close contact with children.
Do you really think so little of teachers that, despite that close contact and all the empathy it requires, we don't hold ourselves accountable to those children and their families?
Are you really willing to say that I don't care and refuse to take responsibility for the children in my class whose needs keep me up at night? Who make me laugh and laugh and laugh? Who have heart palpitations over the awesomeness of snails? Who memorize the Hog-Eye spell* and pore over Zeralda's ogre's herald (baby crying, crossed by fork and knife) just like I did when I was a kid? On whom I will spend in excess of a thousand dollars this year because you won't?
Because if you really believe that - if you really believe that teachers don't care about what their students learn - there's no argument to have.
Anyone who really and truly believes that really and truly believes that teachers are some evil ogre organization, unionized to destroy children.
There's no debating with someone who refuses your essential humanity, and if you think I don't care about my students' progress, you refuse mine.
In the end, every teacher I know holds him or herself to higher standards than John Arnold, Lloyd Blankfein, John Paulson or the capitalist of your choice. And no matter how bad you think the schools are (and you're wrong on that anyway), teachers have done far less to harm children than any derivative or collateralized debt obligation has.
*Hog-Eye, Hog-Eye, magic stare/Make him itchy everywhere/on his nose and in his hair/even in his underwear! Fetch me a Goldman managing director and we'll see if it works!