The rhetoric in my school is that every child needs to go to college. Instead of saying that we should prepare every student to have options after high school, the end-all, be-all has now become a college education.
Of course, this comes at a time when university prices in Washington State will have doubled in some schools inside of five years and in-state college spots are lessening.
Now, I must admit my bias. I don’t believe every student should go to college. I was a hair’s breadth from joining the military instead of enrolling in college, a worthy choice in my biased mind. Other members of family became electricians, carpenters, farmers, and engineers without ever stepping foot on a college campus.
And then, there’s this. Some intelligent and talented students are being encouraged to skip the university level completely.
An then, there’s this advocate of those “dirty jobs.” Why not go into trades which can support families, have steady employment, and do not require college teachings?
Options are out there.
Unfortunately, I’m watching the shrinking of our vocational programs in my school. Plus, some of the classes which remain are being reduced to almost meaningless sessions. TA classes have popped up (to maintain the vocational funding by having vocational classes) where the students meet once a week to fill out forms like how to file papers alphabetically, filling in the political structure of the school district, and other inanities. Another technology class has been reduced to playing video games, using a word processing document, and playing with PowerPoint.
What is happening to your programs? What is your school’s philosophy?
Check out Mike Rowe speaking to Congress here.
I’m considering/wondering about going overseas to teach. Does anyone know anything about how this works or where to look for openings?
I appreciate all the help you can render.
I’m surprised, but not shocked, that politicians and columnists continue to advocate for a link between teacher evaluations and RiF processes, but I have to admit that I’m frustrated by the lack of forethought on this issue.
I don’t believe the current evaluation system in WA State is a good one–which is why nine districts are piloting new systems commissioned by the state–but last in, fist out is the best system right now. It may not be the best later, but right now it’s the most transparent and equitable system known.
Here is my brief comment on a local article comment board regarding this issue:
Everyone agrees the current evaluation system is broken. And, you advocate using that admittedly broken system to determine people’s careers? That’s ludicrous.
Besides this, the evaluation system is supposed to be a growth model for teachers to use to improve their practice. Once it becomes a ranking system, it will create competition in the schools, and teachers will then need to outscore the teacher down the hall rather than collaborate with that teacher.
These types of ideas (linking layoffs to evaluations, value-added scores, merit pay, etc.) create competition and fundamentally change the basis of the collaborative education system. These ideas will change the conversation from “our kids” to “my kids,” and the struggling teacher down the hall (and her 150 students struggling with her) is a benefit to me. Student and teacher struggles would possibly be a desired outcome.
And in that system, everyone loses.
This principal had over 500 people attend a school board meeting to protest his
termination resignation. How many people in your building could garner that type of support?
In what could turn out to be the overreaction of the year, a track coach was fired when one of his male runners took off his shirt while running. Check it out here and keep on eye out for future developments.