Just read this. You should too.
doomed to fail.
…doesn’t want to be reminded of what’s been lost.
sabotages its future
Going to get what it deserves…ignorant, complacent citizens.
maybe that is the point. Ignorant people don’t vote or vote what they hear on TV.
…doomed to fall.
Through the mouths of his characters, the Roman satirist Petronius lamented the anti-intellectual attitudes and privatized education of his day, two thousand years ago:
“Your sentiments do not reflect the public taste, young man, and you are a lover of common sense, which is still more unusual. For that reason, I will not deceive you as to the secrets of my profession. The teachers, who must gibber with lunatics, are by no means to blame for these exercises. Unless they spoke in accordance with the dictates of their young pupils, they would, as Cicero remarks, be left alone in the schools! And, as designing parasites, when they seek invitations to the tables of the rich, have in mind nothing except what will, in their opinion, be most acceptable to their audience –for in no other way can they secure their ends, save by setting snares for the ears–so it is with the teachers of rhetoric, they might be compared with the fisherman, who, unless he baits his hook with what he knows is most appetizing to the little fish, may wait all day upon some rock, without the hope of a catch.”
…a nation at risk.
This struck me as the most salient passage in the article:
“Since 2001, when, for the first time in the history of federal education policy, George Bush’s No Child Left Behind linked school and teacher assessment — and cash rewards — directly to children’s standardized test performance, teachers have been, too often, nothing more than the getters of the scores. What matters in this calculation isn’t the person in front of the class, what his expertise is, what he thinks, about anything. Teachers are no longer the scholars. They are not wise or trusted. They are not valued for their knowledge or ingenuity, but for their ability to abide, to “buy in,” to “manage” a classroom, punch the biometric clock and agree to all things. They are the middlemen, only, the vehicle through which pre-set processed information is handed along. The vehicle that would rarely question an administrator, let alone carry a sign. The vehicle that can be replaced, as I was, when my principal ‘released me from my assignment.’”
I picked the exact same paragraph and sent it to all my colleagues. It felt like a knife was pierced through my soul when I read that passage.
… rapidly declining in character, strength, and leadership.
…no longer civilized.
dishonoring its past, present, and future
This summer, when I cleaned out my room for the new teacher that would take my place, I also took one last look at the closet I painted and stained. It had been covered with graffitti, and once filled with old books and boxes and inoperative keyboards–all soaked, drenched in rat urine. Spraying it down with clorox spray, a brown slick, rat poop, pooled at the bottom.
After cleaning it out, I filled my room with several lamps and turned off the overhead lights. Eventually, my kids would fill my room at lunch, escaping the drug and gang activity in the courtyard, my room was nice, it was safe.
Every now and then a baby mouse would race through as we all hopped on top of our desks, screaming and laughing as I threatened the one of two mentally ill kids to not smush it, let it be. Thankfully, since there was no place to hide, it would scurry back out the door in search of another teacher’s room–a sanctuary.
…doesn’t value its people.
a nation that chooses to continue to lag behind those nations that honor their teachers.
Wow! I think she talks for so many teachers. I retired a year ago, but continue to speak for teachers- including my daughter, my niece, my cousin, my teaching friends and everyone else. When I think of the non-educator education reform that is happening now, I can’t help but think of the rows and rows of Chinese marching in absolute unison. How many administrators are requiring their teachers to be bobble heads, or get out? I know it’s happening in some schools in Ohio. My principal was forced out because she didn’t require her teachers to be bobble heads. We were a broken building because our passage rate on the state tests were at 92% for math and 95% for reading, but we couldn’t show the same increases as those at 37% passage (VAM).
What does China do with its special needs and low functioning students? How soon will we be doing the same?
dishonors its children.
will fail in its democratic purpose.
causing an unnecessary tragedy.
like an insidious infection, slowly attacking and overwhelming the body’s defenses, destroying tissue and organs unseen while the body attempts to maintain homeostasis, until massive organ failure begins, toxins take up residence in cells and the heart fails and the body dies and no amount of “cure” can revive it.
not worthy of them.
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