It was hilarious that President Technocrat in Chief declared this Charter School week as well. When you look at the transcripts of his speech it was long on platitudes regarding the benefit of charters (irony on top of irony a report was issued about KIPP and their creative accounting/reporting) while slightly longer, it was less on thanks Teachers for working long hours with low pay in challenging jobs that my Administration and those prior have done to decimate education.
This quote stands out:
Just as we know a student's circumstances do not dictate his or her potential, we know that having an effective teacher is the most important in-school factor for student success. That is why my Administration has been committed to better recruiting, preparing, retraining, and rewarding America's teachers.
To that I go, "HUH?" We do know that a student's "circumstances" aka poverty and racial background do in fact dictate success and that the untenable prospect of College the supposed leg up to a better life is becoming further and further out of reach for America's poorer students. Ah spoken like a true Technocrat, says he as his daughter goes to Harvard. Yes he and Michelle went there but Michelle is by far a better example of the concept of meritocracy and must realize that regardless of their status and jobs they have a legacy enrollment. I would like to meet similar middle class upper class black families with said opportunities. And understand the segregation patterns and in turn institutions that contribute to why poor families have underperforming schools. And while property values and home sales are rising, oddly or not, homes owned largely by black families even those with strong stable incomes have found their property values decline. Even our tax system disadvantages families of color.
But hey we have Every Student Succeeds Act that will test them right out of that and into career success, where they will again even when possessing the same degrees and credentials earn less and be less likely to be promoted, if they are hired.
The two words "Thank You" were never espoused (look a big word) by President Obama. It was long on his typical prose and circular speak but a simple thanks would have been enough.
I am a Substitute Teacher, I hate my job every day. Do I believe it will be better if I was full time in a classroom? In a word - NO. No, I do not think Sam I am that being at a single school with a clear set of obligations, responsibility and more importantly, students, will make me hate my job less? Only the part of students. I like kids. I am in a classroom now with once again boys dominating the room, they are utterly rude and stupid. It saddens me every time I come to this school and with 6 weeks left I cannot wait to leave this district, it is clueless and useless.
I was in a classroom for a month and every day I hated it. That said I should have never taken the gig, I was not certified nor qualified to teach Math let alone to exclusively ELL students. I might have done okay with clear support and good teaching materials, I had neither. I began to actually again hate the boys that were utterly out of control and when you can't even speak the language that makes it worse. (For the record both have issues regarding sex education, vulgarity and communication regarding the same)
I am angry that the Teacher left a shitty lesson plan, Super Size Me, and the bizarre schedule thanks to testing. We have a 2 hour class and then one hour blocks for the rest of the day. It is like being trapped in nightmare where you are tying to wake up but cannot. If I ever show another inappropriate movie it will be - well probably tomorrow - as that is Teacher's easy day plans. Yes for them, for a substitute no.
So what appreciation do I get? None. I rarely am called by my name and when so it is mispronounced. I am treated like shit by kids who have learned early on that subs are idiots and I also blame many subs who are largely retired and have no interest in teaching, baby sitting yes, teaching no. I see them every day when I come in and they are well oddly stupid, oblivious and arrogant. So after years of that I too wonder why I am surprised that kids think it is bizarre that I talk to them, try to teach and gauge their knowledge and curiosity. I had an amazing young woman yesterday that shared with me her interview with her Mother about migrating here and that she learned American Sign Language first to be able to communicate. I laughed and said that it was my idea that ASL should be the universal language taught to kids when they first get here, then from there they can communicate with each other, learn curriculum and individually build English language skills in their own community by teaching ASL to their family. Imagine that as the basic language for all, it is way easier, less confusing and utterly inclusive.
Don't tell that to the morons at our World School, you will hear crickets. They actually believe they are teaching kids. If they are I missed it.
I guess I don't appreciate Teachers. Well I do just the few that I know do Teach but I also understand why they don't.
It’s Teacher Appreciation Week. Why some teachers don’t exactly appreciate it.
During Teacher Appreciation Week, educators are given gifts from students, and offered free and reduced-price food at stores and restaurants. They get pats on the back, flowers and even money to thank them for their work. Indeed, the National PTA, a prime mover behind Teacher Appreciation Week, has partnered with the fundraising website GoFundMe.com for a “Thank a Teacher”
campaign, in which GoFundMe will match donations of $100 each to campaigns by and for teachers. (You can read about that here.) And teachers are repeatedly called heroes and “superheroes,” as in this plug by the National PTA:
Teachers are real-life superheroes. They educate, innovate, encourage and support. Every day they touch the lives of millions of children and their work and impact extends far beyond the boundaries of the classroom.If that sounds good to you, it doesn’t to many teachers, who say that what they really need isn’t free food and a once-a-year exercise in flattery. What they want, they say, is for their profession to be respected in a way that accepts educators as experts in their field. They want adequate funding for schools, decent pay, valid assessment, job protections and a true voice in policy making.
In recent years, polls have shown teacher morale to be dropping, and teacher shortages are common in state after state. Many educators say that corporate school reformers have targeted teachers as the “problem” with low-performing schools and have attempted to remove teacher autonomy. The Obama administration is seen, by many teachers, as being a big part of the problem, having promoted teacher evaluation systems that teachers say are unfair, and supported groups that they think do a disservice to the profession by placing teachers in classrooms with little training, such as Teach For America.
As John Ewing, an educator and president of the nonprofit Math for America, wrote this in a piece for Huffington Post:
But while all this gratitude is great, it’s only part of what’s missing in American education policy. Real appreciation is more than flattery — it is reflected by actions, not merely words. … When it comes to talking or writing about education, we do not view teachers as experts. We do not trust them as professionals. Can you imagine an engineering conference without engineers as speakers? Can you imagine a science article with no input from scientists? Or a report on some breakthrough in medicine without a quote from a doctor? We treat the profession of teaching differently from all others.That’s why you can go to Twitter and find on various hashtags promoting Teacher Education Week some telling tweets, along with the many “we love teachers” tweets.You can read them here:
President Obama issued a proclamation honoring the day and the week, which says in part:
When I took office, I did so with a bold vision to foster innovation and drive change within our education system, and to expand educational opportunities and outcomes for all America’s learners. Central to that goal is our work to build and strengthen the teaching profession so our teachers are enabled and equipped to inspire rising generations. I have worked hard throughout my Presidency to make sure my Administration does its part to support our educators and our education system, but the incredible progress our country has seen — from achieving record high graduation rates to holding more students to high standards that prepare them for success in college and future careers — is thanks to the dedicated teachers, families, and school leaders who work tirelessly on behalf of our young people.But, as noted above, many teachers don’t view Obama’s policies as being helpful to their profession. In fact, in July 2014, members of the representative assembly of the National Education Association, the largest teachers union in the country and a sponsor of Teacher Appreciation Week, voted for a resolution calling on then-Education Secretary Arne Duncan to resign, accusing him of pushing reform policies that “undermine public schools and colleges, the teaching education professionals, and education unions.” The American Federation of Teachers, the second-largest teachers union, stopped short of calling for Duncan’s resignation in July 2014 but came very close.
Meanwhile, Teacher Appreciation Week goes on. Take a look at some of the press surrounding Teacher Appreciation Week, and Teacher Appreciation Day, which is Tuesday:
National Teacher Appreciation Day (5/3/16): How to get free food at Chipotle, Chick-fil-AFrom WTVD-TV Raleigh-Durham:
Forget the apples — National Teacher Appreciation Day 2016, also known as National Teacher Day, and part of National Teacher Appreciation Week, brings free grub at two chain restaurants for those who teach. Both Chipotle and Chick-fil-A fans who preside over classrooms in New Jersey will be pleased to know that their meals will be on the house or discounted on Tuesday, May 3.
Freebies and deals for educators during Teacher Appreciation WeekAnd don’t forget that Truecouponing.com offers some free stuff to give to teachers.
May 3, 2016 is National Teacher Appreciation Day and May 1-7 is National Teacher Appreciation Week. To say thank you, many businesses are honoring educators with freebies and discounts. Most deals require a valid staff ID, and some require registration for a discount.
Ewing, in his piece on Huffington Post, explains what the teaching profession really needs:
The teaching profession needs two things in order to thrive — respect and trust. The two go together. You can say nice words and be grateful to teachers, but if you do not trust them as professionals, you are not showing them respect. Trust means giving teachers (appropriate) autonomy in their classrooms, but it also means giving them influence over policy — real influence, not a few token teachers on some committee — and it means giving them control over their own professional growth. We need to stop fixing teachers and create environments in which teachers themselves fix their own profession. We need to trust them to do so
Will some teachers abuse that trust? Of course. That happens in every profession. We can deal with it. Far more will not, however, and on balance education will be greatly improved for everyone, and most especially for the student
So by all means, during Teacher Appreciation Week express words of gratitude and give awards and flatter teachers who excel at their jobs. But let’s also vow to trust teachers as experts, and to do it through our actions in addition to our words. That shows genuine appreciation — the kind that lasts and makes a difference.