Skip to comments.In Defense of Teachers and Teachers' Unions (a howler, indeed)
Posted on 10/04/2010 7:21:53 AM PDT by flowerplough
Subhead teaser: "Contrary to what you'd think watching the new documentary, "Waiting for Superman", teachers and teachers' unions are not the spawn of the devil. "
Article difficult to excerpt - seems to make claim that union ain't as bad as it looks because:
"Half of all teachers leave teaching within five years."
"Charter schools across the nation do about the same as public schools; some do well, others poorly."
"Merit pay plans, pay for performance, have simply not worked."
"Tenure means due process, not a "job for life."
"Testing narrows what we teach; "if we don't test it, we don't teach/learn it."
"Why are we ignoring the impact of poverty?"
(Excerpt) Read more at theroot.com ...
I think we should agree with the teachers on this one point. Schools seem to be so wrapped up in teaching the tests that even if they genuinely wanted to teach conventional subjects, they simply cannot do so.
Sure you can find the dedicated professionals that the supporters like to tout. Unfortunately they are few and far between.
A far larger number of the teachers I knew are students who never left school. They spend 16 years in a school system, kindergarten to college, then return to the same system. They never have had to deal with any other world. It is the Peter Pan story, they never have to grow up.
These teachers relish the school environment, the cliques, the clubs, the prom scene, and the exploration of adolescent life. I have seen many act as "match makers" pairing up their idea of the "perfect couple". They re-live their favorite time in life vicariously through their students. IMHO that is one of the factors that leads to teachers having emotional and physical relations with their students. They cannot distinguish the reality that they are now supposed to be the adults.
One of my coworkers has a relative who teaches special education. He got an award from his schools for "most improved" classes or something like that. He said he got it mainly because he went from teaching severely developmentally disabled children who could barely write their names to getting a bundle of kids who were either below average or just discipline problems. Since there was no scoring on the curve based on what type of problems the kids had, he suddenly had a lot of students who were merely below average on the school population, but way above average for special education students and ended up with a huge increase in test scores.
But even with these problems, teaching to the test is still better than the old system of teaching to no standards at alll.
When scores are low the principals put pressure on the teachers to improve scores. If your child scores low extra help is provided on subjects he is struggling with.
The last thing my kids need is a revisionist history lessons on how Columbus invaded a sovereign nation and more English and math instruction.
The only teachers that complain about testing are those who want to indoctrinate our kids into the socialist-environmental agenda.
The personification of a bad joke are the teachers unions and unions in general. They are looking for union dues to sponsor their own political aims. What a bunch of losers.
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