Friday, December 24, 2010

Favorite comments of '10: Matthew K. Tabor, Anonymous, and Bhammer on the freedom of speech of teachers

Matthew K. Tabor
The climate in the administration of K-12 schools does not reward, let alone encourage or even condone, the type of conversations you and I would like to have with teachers. Those teachers willing to examine the issues are strangled by what's best described as fear imposed by their peers and admins. The professional climate is miserable - and then improvement comes at a snail's meandering, often misguided, pace. It's understandable when an individual teacher remains silent in a climate like this. 

Between the unwilling, those forced to compelled to remain silent and the do-nothing clowns in university ed departments, we're in trouble.

As a high school math teacher who felt "pushed out" by bringing these ideas to administrations, I am not surprised that many teachers avoid topics such as this. In many schools teachers, especially new teachers, are encouraged to just follow the line and don't make waves.

I have been trying to remove Investigations from my district for years, however district administrators are unwilling to engage the public in a curriculum review. It's tragic that the bad decisions of a few individuals can undermine the prosperity of an entire community. But that's exactly what happens when school leaders adopt programs that weaken the math skills of elementary students.

No comments: