The Bottom of the Teachers’ Union Barrel?

posted at 2:00 pm on February 20, 2011 by Jazz Shaw

With state budgets collapsing around the nation, an increasingly bright spotlight has been focused on the activities of many public sector unions, perhaps none more so than the teachers unions. Since most of the news is rather alarming to say the least, here at Hot Air we feel obliged to bring you a true feel-good story of union activity to brighten your winter days. With that in mind, I invite you to look over this CNN video journal by reporter Steve Perry. (Video available at the end of this column.)

The story focuses on Central Falls school in Rhode Island, an educational institute in such a sorry state of affairs that their drop-out rates were staggering and many students didn’t even log enough classroom time to receive a grade. Last year, in an apparent sign of throwing up their hands in despair, the school board took the drastic measure of firing all 88 of Central Falls’ teachers.

UPDATE: I’ve been reminded that Ed covered the firing of the teachers last year with full details of just how badly the school was performing.

Now, I already know what you’re thinking here. “But Jazz, what about those poor, unemployed teachers? Couldn’t anyone do anything to help them?”

Fear not! In charged the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers, who not only got all of their jobs back… they landed them a raise. And all of this is taking place in a community which wouldn’t even qualify as “working class” by most standards. The average wages in the Central Falls region are very low. Steve Perry sat down with Supervisor of Schools Frances Gallo to ask her about it.

CNN: So did you wind up paying them more?

Gallo: Yes

CNN: Central Falls is a poor community. Where did you get the money?

Gallo: Through the School Improvement Grant dollars. We had promised that if we secured those dollars, there would be a $3,000 stipend per teacher.

He then questions union representative James Parisi, who also seems to be put off by the pay situation.

CNN: So in this town where the average income is $22,000 the average teacher is now making $76,000. What are the community members paying for?

James Parisi: The highest paid teachers are making about $76,000, which frankly I don’t think is enough for the committed professionals that are in that school district.

CNN: You had a 93% fail rate. That’s undeniable.

JP: And you think that’s caused by teacher’s actions?

CNN: Absolutely.

JP: I don’t think the teachers are responsible.

We should note that the teachers didn’t just walk away with more cash without making some concessions. They had to agree to a number changes including making each class a few minutes longer and being forced to eat lunch with the students.

And how did that work out? Not so well, apparently, as 93% of the students are still failing to meet minimum standards in math and reading, with large numbers once again not even receiving a grade of any sort.

The teacher’s aren’t taking all of this unwanted attention lying down, though. This fall they staged a “sick out” in protest of the increasing demands for improved performance. Also, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten visited the area to demand that everyone “stop playing the blame game,” and focus on the real needs of the students. (These needs apparently don’t include new, better teachers in the opinion of Ms. Weingarten.)

So there you have it. The feel good story of the week. See? And you thought the unions weren’t out there doing anything productive. The video of CNN’s report follows. Enjoy.

Now you can yell at Jazz for being a stupid, wrong-headed RINO even faster than by leaving a comment. Follow him on Twitter! @JazzShaw

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
To see the comments on the original post, look here.


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The teachers unions: Ensuring an ignorant citizenry that will vote democrat their entire life.

csdeven on February 20, 2011 at 2:05 PM

We had issues in our city. One of the lowest performing inner city schools promoted a faculty wide effort to skew results on state standardized testing.

http://www.telegram.com/article/20110220/NEWS/102200476/1116

DLEW on February 20, 2011 at 2:06 PM

Any charter schools in the area? How is the enrollment and performance in them?

indypat on February 20, 2011 at 2:08 PM

I’m sure that Patches Kennedy will get right on this. Now that he has all that free time.

GarandFan on February 20, 2011 at 2:12 PM

I used to live in nearby Pawtucket (Land of Limericks). Driving through Central Falls was depressing as hell. What a dump.

S. Weasel on February 20, 2011 at 2:12 PM

THE PRIMARY GOAL FOR MOST UNIONIZED PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS (AND TENURED COLLEGE FACULTIES)IS BRAINWASHING OUR KIDS INTO POMO PC.

THAT’S WHY OUR KIDS DO SO POORLY ON THE BASICS, ON THE 3R’S.

reliapundit on February 20, 2011 at 2:14 PM

Jazz is a RINO? Who knew? I had the impression (from Ed) he was a democrat.

gh on February 20, 2011 at 2:15 PM

I am sure Rainman and Dr. Z will complain about how hard it is to get rid of bad teacher just as they do about getting rid of a bad public school student./ heh

CWforFreedom on February 20, 2011 at 2:17 PM

If these teachers were actually doing things like improving test scores, and compelling students to obtain academic achievement and excellence, I would be all for them getting whatever raise and concessions I felt they were entitled to.

But instead, American students nationswide lack woefully behind students in other countries, INCLUDING INDIA, in such curriculum requirements as math, science, history, even reading. It is far worse in urban areas like major cities like Chicago and Detroit.

But despite all this, every single time the teachers union starts huffing and puffing demanding this raise or this concession, school boards willfully comply with nary a word of protest.

Meanwhile, their schools are being turned into diploma mills that are churning out high school students who can’t even read above a 5th grade level, who most likely will not meet the requirements for college, and who will probably end up either barely making a living on mininum wage or will be living on either unemployment or welfare or just plain homeless!

And I know this all too well because this is exactly what happened to my own son, so you better believe that I happen to hold teachers unions, not to mention teachers who do not do the jobs they should be doing, but who instead demand regular wages and benefits entitlements that they don’t deserve on a regular basis, in absolute contempt!

pilamaye on February 20, 2011 at 2:21 PM

No parental guidance = no success in school.

Teachers are, in general, whiny, self-serving, deluded wussies, but without solid families you aren’t going to teach kids jack sh*t.

Metro on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

I think I will go to RedBox and rent “Searching for Superman”. My kids are grown but this needs to stop.

Cindy Munford on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

You know, maybe now would be a good time to go through all the teacher-student sex abuse that’s going on. The abuse dwarfs what the pedo-priests did, and nobody cares.

End the monopoly on education, and make the people who benefit from it pay for it.

Iblis on February 20, 2011 at 2:26 PM

Can’t read your own diploma? Thank a union teacher.

Cicero43 on February 20, 2011 at 2:33 PM

If kids don’t learn, and if teachers aren’t to blame, then teachers aren’t an important part of the process.

Think about it: The kids don’t learn. They don’t learn if teachers make $10000. They don’t learn if teachers make $80000. The teachers are not to blame. Just ask them. So why wouldn’t we pay them the $10000 (or less) if the result is the same?

It goes for teachers the same as it goes for President Obama: if nothing that ever happens is your fault, then you are useless.

Kohath on February 20, 2011 at 2:34 PM

Through the School Improvement Grant dollars.

Ah yes, they plucked the cash from the School Improvement Grant trees.

These people have no idea where money comes from.

reaganaut on February 20, 2011 at 2:34 PM

Defund the Dept of Ed., break apart the unions, fire the current batch of morons and return control of k-12 schools to their communities and states.

It’s gonna happen anyway after they’ve bankrupted the country, but if we did it now, we might just stave off that scenario.

P.S. My whole family is comprised of teachers, from my parents, to my siblings, to my kid.

Tim Zank on February 20, 2011 at 2:37 PM

If kids don’t learn, and if teachers aren’t to blame, then teachers aren’t an important part of the process.

Think about it: The kids don’t learn. They don’t learn if teachers make $10000. They don’t learn if teachers make $80000. The teachers are not to blame. Just ask them. So why wouldn’t we pay them the $10000 (or less) if the result is the same?

It goes for teachers the same as it goes for President Obama: if nothing that ever happens is your fault, then you are useless.

+ 1000

Tim Zank on February 20, 2011 at 2:38 PM

Ah yes, they plucked the cash from the School Improvement Grant trees Obama’s stash.

reaganaut on February 20, 2011 at 2:34 PM

IrishEi on February 20, 2011 at 2:38 PM

No parental guidance = no success in school.

Teachers are, in general, whiny, self-serving, deluded wussies, but without solid families you aren’t going to teach kids jack sh*t.

Metro on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

I suspect that this has been a problem long enough that the parents involved are also a product of the failed system. When that point is reached, recovery becomes near impossible.

slickwillie2001 on February 20, 2011 at 2:41 PM

What we are seeing now in places like Central Falls, Washington DC, and Madison, WI is that urban school districts have simply become employment agencies for lazy people who actually do work only when necessary to protect their paychecks and pensions. From the top administrators all the way down to the paert-time teaching assistants, nobody cares about ecuation, nobody cares about results, and nobody cares about their communities falling down around them because they are churning out dolts who can’t read or think or do anythng that will generate new wealth.

A good economy for decades has allowed us all to ignore what is going on in these big city school districts, and the gravy train has kept rolling while nobody actually learned anything in these schools. Now the economy has tanked and other people’s money has run out.

rockmom on February 20, 2011 at 2:48 PM

Sorry for all those typos, and yes, I did go to public schools. :-P

rockmom on February 20, 2011 at 2:49 PM

Cindy Munford on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

Hi- its “Waiting for Superman” and it is a great documentary, just watched it this week. I can’t believe that it is by the same guy who did “An inconvenient truth.” The doc is solidly conservative in its message- pro school choice (vouchers), and rabidly anti-union. Randi Weingarten is portrayed as satan incarnate- that was worth the rental price alone.

shannonkelly on February 20, 2011 at 2:51 PM

I hate this in theory, but I have to admit I can’t stop thinking, “How worked up should I get about this when local parents aren’t even rising up in anger about it?”

The Lone Platypus on February 20, 2011 at 2:52 PM

The public education system is and will be the demise of this country. We spend tens of thousands of dollars each year so that our children can learn to hate their country and despise what it stands for. If public workers have the right to unionize, why don’t we let the military?

rich8450 on February 20, 2011 at 2:54 PM

In my hometown, we had an oft elected school board member who cried about the “children”. He was ousted after he struck a child with his car, and fled the scene. To show even more support for the “children” he used school funds and paid work time to purchase MardiGras throws. Did he quit, nope. They had to impeach him. After all he was fighting for the “children”. He was tried and convicted for the auto accident, he was ordered to jail. Did he go quietly off to jail to serve his time? Nope. He had his cousin (the Judge), change his paperwork to serve at a better jail. I guess it was so that he could continue to set such a great example for the “children”.

kringeesmom on February 20, 2011 at 2:56 PM

Metro on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

High parental involvement = high success rate. It is the reason charter schools generally work so well. We can all agree if kids don’t want to learn that they won’t.

tim c on February 20, 2011 at 2:56 PM

I think I will go to RedBox and rent “Searching for Superman”. My kids are grown but this needs to stop.

Cindy Munford on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

The film is called Waiting for Superman. Have you been to the Harlem Children’s Zone or Canada’s school? The place is run like something out of an Orwell novel. Firstly, the school gets large amounts of funding from outside groups, including George Soros. The school also holds “lotteries” to determine which students can enter, but the parents need to jump through hoops to register. This ensures that the school gets students whose parents will support education. Those Harlem kids from broken homes? This isn’t for them, apparently. In fact, the school also has a fairly large number of non-lower income students, incredibly unusual for a school in Harlem.

The school also has no obligation to keep a student. Under perform on a test? You’re out. Don’t do your homework? Gone. Cry in class because your parents are getting a divorce? Cya. That’s the difference between these schools and public schools. The public schools need to deal with EVERYONE, they can’t pick and choose. Thanks to cuts in SPED programs, you’re seeing more and more IDEA kids being dumped into mainstream programs, and teachers can’t keep up. Besides, the Harlem Children’s Zone, like the other types of charter schools before it, is incredibly expensive and depended on tons of outside donations. They have dried up, and thanks to the current scandals around the school, it will be gone in a few years.

As far as RI goes, if teachers are taking home 71k while the median income is 25k, sure that’s a little high. But did anyone bother checking the town demographics? Only 6% of residents age 25 or older have any sort of college degree. Nearly three out of four households are single-mother families. I can only imagine the level of non-commitment from these students. Any given teacher will see a student for 40 minutes a day. I wonder what the truancy rate is? The delinquency rate? Interestingly, those numbers aren’t made available. At some point, the school board voted these teachers these massive salaries. My question is: why? Any one of the citizens can run for the board, so what happened? There’s clearly more to this story then is being reported, and the teachers seem relatively overpaid, but blaming failing grades in a community like this on the teachers is silly. On Long Island, you’ll have a district with a 99% graduation rate bordering the one with 50%. The lower one gets more state aid, and has the same pool of teachers as the higher graduate rate one (as salaries are virtually identical). So what explains the lower graduation rate? Well, it starts at home.

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 3:01 PM

Actually if you look at public education through the progressive lens, the system has been a screaming success. It was not really intended to educate, but to indoctrinate and to teach the children to honor the state. Public education separates the children from their family and puts them in artificial social situations. The result has been, less family, more state, less critical thinking more teaching to the test and so on. We did not have public schools for our country’s first 100 years. Children were taught at home, or in the one room schoolhouse. Seemed to work out fine for Abe Lincoln.

kringeesmom on February 20, 2011 at 3:05 PM

Local parents worry about repercussions from local teachers—-their children have to re-enter the classrooms, pass tests, participate in extra-curriculars with these revengeful facists…..

they could care less about the kids education, but they damn well can make it hell on earth for the kids for years.

sbark on February 20, 2011 at 3:09 PM

I had a pretty comprehensive dismantling of Canada’s school (from “Waiting for Superman), and an alternate take on the RI situation. Basically, teachers are overpaid and whiny, but in that community it’s certainly not THEIR fault (6% college degree rate = :/ ). But apparently, whoever auto-moded it doesn’t like being proven wrong. Where did they get this guy/half you commenter, anyway? Bargain Bin Bonanza?

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 3:09 PM

Well, well, well…….
After the end of the protests yesterday, teacher’s can be seen boarding school buses used for public education.

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/185603_112162892195370_111615612250098_96043_4287172_n.jpg

tencole on February 20, 2011 at 3:10 PM

If kids don’t learn, and if teachers aren’t to blame, then teachers aren’t an important part of the process.
Kohath on February 20, 2011 at 2:34 PM

No, no. It never works that way. No matter how bad things are now, every liberal can always automatically justify himself by saying that everything would be a lot worse WITHOUT the infinitely valuable help they have provided.

The same “logic” that once justified witch burning and bloodletting is now used to rationalize every liberal scheme from Communism to Global Cooling. The Church Of Liberalism has only one Commandment: “There shall be no standards.” As long as they enforce that sole canon with utter ruthlessness, then it is absolutely impossible to prove that anything any liberal ever does is “wrong” – no matter how obviously insanely and counterproductive it is.

logis on February 20, 2011 at 3:14 PM

Latest news report from Madison: Scott Walker is apparently softening his position. Secretly negotiating with RINO state senators. Wow.

bifidis on February 20, 2011 at 3:15 PM

No parental guidance = no success in school.

Teachers are, in general, whiny, self-serving, deluded wussies, but without solid families you aren’t going to teach kids jack sh*t.

Metro on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

I agree. I have seen both the things you describe here with my own eyes.
Teachers too lazy to do a good job.
Kids too lazy with whining parents who demand easy As.
I have parents that think it is only my job to teach & motivate their kids.
And overwhelming # of parents I have seen think this.
I’m sorry, but you are never going to teach any kid anything no matter how hard you try if they don’t want to learn.
I do everything I can to make my science classes more & more interesting, ‘fun’, etc.
But science is hard & kids don’t want to do their work. And instead of parents demanding their children do the work (set consequences & follow through) I’ve got some parents who think their kids not turning in all of the work is somehow MY fault.
Why is it my fault when a kid does not turn in their vocabulary crossword puzzle?
Why is it my fault that their kid never comes in & asks for more help?
Why is that?
Why is it the state of ND in HS lets kids fail one subject, & only maintains that if you are failing TWO subjects, that you are then ineligible for sports?
They shouldn’t be allowed to fail ONE subject before they are ineligible!
Why is it the administration tries to ‘compel’ me to ‘pass’ students?
Why is it that I am pressured to make my class ‘easier’?
My goals in my classes are not unrealistic.
I teach to the standards as mandated by my state.
Why is it that people think their kids can graduate with a 5th grade reading level?
Why the heck is this?
Why have special ed kids been mainstreamed into the classroom when it puts them, as well as the other students, at an educational disadvantage?
I could go on.
But the fact is, the Feds need to get the hell out of education & let the states & local communities decide what their kids should be taught & how they should be taught.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 3:16 PM

High parental involvement = high success rate.
tim c on February 20, 2011 at 2:56 PM

And high government and union control = low parental involvement in federal schools.

Ergo…

Um, damn. Can somebody who went to a non-union school help me out with this one?

logis on February 20, 2011 at 3:18 PM

I had a pretty comprehensive dismantling of Canada’s school (from “Waiting for Superman), and an alternate take on the RI situation. Basically, teachers are overpaid and whiny, but in that community it’s certainly not THEIR fault (6% college degree rate = :/ ). But apparently, whoever auto-moded it doesn’t like being proven wrong. Where did they get this guy/half you commenter, anyway? Bargain Bin Bonanza?

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 3:09 PM

What? Miss out on some sleep last nite?

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 3:23 PM

Well, well, well……. After the end of the protests yesterday, teacher’s can be seen boarding school buses used for public education.
tencole on February 20, 2011 at 3:10 PM

So what? Seriously, is there anyone out there who thinks tax dollars AREN’T paying for every last bit of this “grassroots demonstration” — including the AWOL legislators’ out-of-state hotel bills?

logis on February 20, 2011 at 3:25 PM

The town of Central Falls has been in receivership since last May.

Emperor Norton on February 20, 2011 at 3:28 PM

As far as RI goes, if teachers are taking home 71k while the median income is 25k, sure that’s a little high. But did anyone bother checking the town demographics? Only 6% of residents age 25 or older have any sort of college degree. Nearly three out of four households are single-mother families. I can only imagine the level of non-commitment from these students. Any given teacher will see a student for 40 minutes a day. I wonder what the truancy rate is? The delinquency rate? Interestingly, those numbers aren’t made available. At some point, the school board voted these teachers these massive salaries. My question is: why? Any one of the citizens can run for the board, so what happened? There’s clearly more to this story then is being reported, and the teachers seem relatively overpaid, but blaming failing grades in a community like this on the teachers is silly. On Long Island, you’ll have a district with a 99% graduation rate bordering the one with 50%. The lower one gets more state aid, and has the same pool of teachers as the higher graduate rate one (as salaries are virtually identical). So what explains the lower graduation rate? Well, it starts at home.

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 3:01 PM

Dear God … if we can’t expect teachers to “educate” children to even our pitifully abysmal standards then what the hell do we need them for?

Just put a damn Japanese robot in there instead. At least it doesn’t need luxurious benefits and a salary three times that of the local population.

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 3:29 PM

Latest news report from Madison: Scott Walker is apparently softening his position. Secretly negotiating with RINO state senators. Wow.

bifidis on February 20, 2011 at 3:15 PM

Somehow I don’t think Governor Walker will be budging from his position that the budget must be balanced. Some executives take the idea of “consitutional mandates” rather seriously.

gryphon202 on February 20, 2011 at 3:30 PM

Teachers unions- cranking out little democrats.

BKeyser on February 20, 2011 at 3:31 PM

The town of Central Falls has been in receivership since last May.

Emperor Norton on February 20, 2011 at 3:28 PM

Oh … good. They can now cancel the teachers contract and renegotiate something more reasonable … say, a salary dependent on student performance not to exceed $40,000.

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 3:32 PM

Teachers unions- cranking out little democrats.

BKeyser on February 20, 2011 at 3:31 PM

That can’t read.

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 3:33 PM

Latest news report from Madison: Scott Walker is apparently softening his position. Secretly negotiating with RINO state senators. Wow.

bifidis on February 20, 2011 at 3:15 PM

Are you sure you’re reading the same article I am?

gryphon202 on February 20, 2011 at 3:35 PM

Just put a damn Japanese robot in there instead. At least it doesn’t need luxurious benefits and a salary three times that of the local population.
darwin on February 20, 2011 at 3:29 PM

Or, better yet, try something called BOOKS.

Since the invention of moveable type, the profession of “teacher” has been as outmoded as that of scrivener.

Nowadays, you need somebody to help the kindergarteners learn phonics, and to care for the disabled.

But beyond that point, all you need are proctors — people to monitor the tests; hit the kids when they don’t study enough, and keep the disgusting little monsters from injuring and/or impregnating each other. Unfortunately, federal teachers today do pretty much everything EXCEPT that.

logis on February 20, 2011 at 3:38 PM

Are you sure you’re reading the same article I am?

gryphon202 on February 20, 2011 at 3:35 PM

It’s sounds like Walker and the GOP senator intend to pass this bill-AS IT NOW STANDS-and are willing to wait-out the Dims.
I CAN HAZ CHUTZPAH!

annoyinglittletwerp on February 20, 2011 at 3:44 PM

It should have been ‘senators’.
Whap.

annoyinglittletwerp on February 20, 2011 at 3:45 PM

I CAN HAZ CHUTZPAH!

annoyinglittletwerp on February 20, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Close the thread! We have a winner!

gryphon202 on February 20, 2011 at 3:47 PM

I used to live in nearby Pawtucket (Land of Limericks). Driving through Central Falls was depressing as hell. What a dump.

S. Weasel on February 20, 2011 at 2:12 PM

But look at it this way: if you blinked, you’d miss it.

jackmac on February 20, 2011 at 3:47 PM

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 3:16 PM

From the majority of your posts, it is clear that you recognize the difference between being a public sector servant and a public sector leech. We need more like you and less of what we see on display in WI.

fourdeucer on February 20, 2011 at 3:49 PM

Students enrolled in the Department of Education are usually at the bottom of the barrel. Half of the teachers in Massachusetts could not pass the MCAS examination (the standardized exam of the state for graduating high school seniors) themselves.

bayview on February 20, 2011 at 3:52 PM

Vouchers here. Vouchers now.

mankai on February 20, 2011 at 3:55 PM

But instead, American students nationswide lack woefully behind students in other countries, INCLUDING INDIA, in such curriculum requirements as math, science, history, even reading. It is far worse in urban areas like major cities like Chicago and Detroit.

pilamaye on February 20, 2011 at 2:21 PM

If you’re using the PISA tests, then you are quite wrong for using a flawed test. Those countries are more restrictive than the US, to the point where your life’s amount of freedom is dictated by one score. You want to make your point, try using something that doesnt favor countries that reserve education for the few(and thus stack the deck).

In short, the US only looks bad because it allows more people to receive education – with fewer restrictions.

sethstorm on February 20, 2011 at 4:04 PM

From the majority of your posts, it is clear that you recognize the difference between being a public sector servant and a public sector leech. We need more like you and less of what we see on display in WI.

fourdeucer on February 20, 2011 at 3:49 PM

Thank you. I am one of the only teachers at my school that, for instance, does not feel the need to get sub pay when some students from n absent teacher’s class are sent to my study hall to be watched.
Why should I get paid for that when a few more students does not change what I was doing?
I don’t have a problem taking SUB pay when I am asked to sub during a prep hour & actually have to teach that class bcs that detracts from my job.
But if I am asked to sub as just ‘study hall’, even if kids are sent to my room during my prep hour & I don’t have to teach the class, then I should not get sub pay.
WTH for?
I have no problem with doing things like that.
Our principal wheedles every damned dime he can get doing stuff like that.
In fact, when he CAN hire a sub, he doesn’t & lets himself ‘sub’ & takes the sub pay for that hour.
Problem is, he often leaves the students UNATTENDED while he collects sub pay for ‘subbing’.
And isn’t that one of a principal’s duties, to sub if one cannot be found?!
These are the leeches that are running the asylum.
I for one am SICK OF IT!
VOUCHERS! FREE CHOICE!

Half of the teachers in Massachusetts could not pass the MCAS examination (the standardized exam of the state for graduating high school seniors) themselves.

bayview on February 20, 2011 at 3:52 PM

Here in ND we take the PRAXIS exam.
I had no problem passing it with flying colors & I’m not a genius.
I knew a PE major who took 3 times to pass it.
This is unacceptable to me.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 4:08 PM

Also, when I go on a trip with students, if I am given a free lunch, like at Science Olympiad, I do not bill the school for lunch.
If I do have to end up buying my own food, well then of course I bill the school.
But I know people get that $$ when they don’t have to.
Why not save your school $$ when you can?!?!

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 4:10 PM

But instead, American students nationswide lack woefully behind students in other countries, INCLUDING INDIA, in such curriculum requirements as math, science, history, even reading. It is far worse in urban areas like major cities like Chicago and Detroit.

pilamaye on February 20, 2011 at 2:21 PM

If you’re using the PISA tests, then you are quite wrong for using a flawed test. Those countries are more restrictive than the US, to the point where your life’s amount of freedom is dictated by one score. You want to make your point, try using something that doesnt favor countries that reserve education for the few(and thus stack the deck).

In short, the US only looks bad because it allows more people to receive education – with fewer restrictions.

sethstorm on February 20, 2011 at 4:04 PM

You have a huge point.
Everyone here knows which side I stand on.
But it is true that this test comparison btw US students & foreign students is grossly lopsided & is akin to comparing apples to asparagus.
Those countries often get to cherry pick their students. i.e. India.
I have met with many Indian students from various parts of India. Only the motivated get far enough to test. And they are the brightest.
Here in the US, EVERYONE takes the ‘test’.
Including all special ed students, non-English speaking students, poor English speaking students, etc.
That isn’t a measure of anything.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 4:13 PM

No parental guidance = no success in school.

Teachers are, in general, whiny, self-serving, deluded wussies, but without solid families you aren’t going to teach kids jack sh*t.

Metro on February 20, 2011 at 2:25 PM

Very true!
I have never seen the teachers or the union hacks object to an influx of illgals who don’t speak English. They have accepted every la-la new change to the curiculum and teaching method with relish. They accept teen pregnancy in the name of self esteem. They voted for every Democrat they can find.

ENOUGH fROM me, you get the idea. THE “TEACHERS” ARE TO BLAME!!! More than almost anyone.

FOWG1 on February 20, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Why have special ed kids been mainstreamed into the classroom when it puts them, as well as the other students, at an educational disadvantage?
I could go on.
But the fact is, the Feds need to get the hell out of education & let the states & local communities decide what their kids should be taught & how they should be taught.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 3:16 PM

Now there’s a joke, Special Ed… I had a foster kid who was DD w/Aspergers. He had been tested with about a K-5 ability. At 17, he was in SpecEd Classes. He got an “A” in reading. Guess what he was taught to read! Signs (Stop, Don’t walk, etc.). When I had him, I read to him every morning from a chapter book, then asked him questions about what I had read, he got most of them right. Then I engaged him in a discussion of what we had read and he participated and made some salient points. When we came across a word he did not know, I would read him the dictionary definition of the word and ask him to give me the correct definition for the context of the story. He usually got it right. A few days after starting this regimine, I heard him use one of his “new” words in a conversation and he even used the word in the correct context. He loved words!! Total time spent on this project 20 minutes a day. Total cost $0.00 (I used a library book and an online dictionary). So much for K-5, the book we were reading was about 5th-6th grade book. This kid had an inane sense of direction, remembered colors of buildings on a particular route, and could turn my entire house upside down searching for stuff (he would have been a champ at Easter Egg hunts). I would have loved to spent more time with him, showing him how to read maps, and making up scavenger hunts and stuff, but alas, he had too many issues and left my care. My point is that each child has their own way of learning, and that they should be taught using their strengths. I’ll bet I coulda taught him to read more than stop signs with a little more time. But he was in the system, had a label, and no one really gave a hoot about him.

kringeesmom on February 20, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Too Bad Hurricanes don’t get up to WI… Katrina did wonders for New Orleans Public Schools.

roflmao

donabernathy on February 20, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Dear God … if we can’t expect teachers to “educate” children to even our pitifully abysmal standards then what the hell do we need them for?

There you have it. A 93 percent failure rate, even for a severely depressed city like Central Falls is unacceptable. The teachers in this city must long ago have opted to show up for work, collect their pay and make no effort to bring about even the tiniest change. One wonders if they stay simply because they could not succeed anywhere else? They have thrown in the towel just like the kids. If it’s so bad there and absolutely no progress can be made, why then are they still there? How did it get this bad? It has to be asked. Judging by their pay levels, many have been there a while. Surely, at some point in time, they could have moved on to places providing more support and job satisfaction. Apparently they don’t. This speaks volumes by itself. They’re as failed as the kids they teach and with much less reason. Sorry teach, no excuses. You know what or get off the pot.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 4:49 PM

Two words:
Social Issues.
It’s not only about economics.
Real education begins with the Word of God.

maynila on February 20, 2011 at 5:09 PM

Not there of course(though I did live in the town directly north of there for 45 years and remember a not great but not as bad as this Central Falls once upon a time), but I’ll bet new teachers come there with a genuine desire to make a difference and get swallowed up by the ennui of the older teachers and the ‘what’s the use’ attitude that must prevail there. What to do about it? I certainly don’t know. But, I do think that the State could start by not looking the other way and put the resources there to at least get the worst elements out as a beginning. Detroit east!!!!

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 5:17 PM

Even the MSM is finding that the union stranglehold is destroying our schools.

CBS has discovered what happens in end-stage union pensions: Broke and No Pensions

PattyJ on February 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 3:01 PM

I taught in a low socio-economic school district for nearly 25 years. It averaged 3000 students for nearly the entire time. The last ten years it was 43% hispanic, 42% black, 12% white and 3% others. Lots of broken families and lots of behavior problems except in my classes. I just didn’t tolerate the excuses and behaviors. The same students who would cause every other teacher grief behaved in my classes. I required students to be in their seats working when the tardy bell rang and they were in their seats working when the dismissal bell rang. I required them to complete every assignment and correct errors to any assignment before they could move to the next assignment. They were required to pass every quiz (100% for theory based and 80% for math based). If you failed the quiz you got a new set of assignments to do before a retake. All labs had to be completed and the laboratory report had to be turned in with all the required information. The students had to pass every test (70% or higher). If you didn’t follow the requirements of my class you failed. I did not give “D” grades. This type of program required me to have 5 classes (35 each) of students on individual learning plans. To achieve a “C” grade they had to master the basic California Standards for the class. Higher grades required more. Students were in my classes from the time I opened my doors to the type I left for my coaching assignment. I taught Chemistry and even with an average 5.5 reading level in my classes my students were able to pass the state standards test and the local college entry exams for taking 1st year college chemistry. The administration hated what I did because I proved that these kids could actually do the work. The administration eventually drove me out because even my “C” students did much better than the “A” students from the other Chemistry teachers and other high schools in the district. The long and short of this is that the students who are in a public school can be taught if the teacher quits making excuses about their backgrounds and establishes a good learning environment in their own classroom. I took on my administration every year over my classroom requirements. They thought I was to hard on the poor darlings. I made it clear I wasn’t going to change and they needed the other teachers to rise up to my standards. The bottom line is I don’t accept the excuses about poor environments hindering the students.

chemman on February 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

I have never seen the teachers or the union hacks object to an influx of illgals who don’t speak English. They have accepted every la-la new change to the curiculum and teaching method with relish. They accept teen pregnancy in the name of self esteem. They voted for every Democrat they can find.

ENOUGH fROM me, you get the idea. THE “TEACHERS” ARE TO BLAME!!! More than almost anyone.

FOWG1 on February 20, 2011 at 4:31 PM

I would give some of us credit here.
Don’t lump us into that cesspool.
I HATE the dumbing down of the curriculum so that No Child Is Left Behind.
PARENTS ARE ALSO TO BLAME.
COMMUNITIES & the SCHOOL BOARDS & the PEOPLE WHO ELECT THEM
are also to blame.
I teach with teachers who do not teach, that is for sure.
But actually in our small rural school, a lot of our teachers really give their 150%.
I do not accept the dumbing down of the curriculum.
Here in ND I am relatively free to develop my own curriculum around the state standards.
We are, however, being increasingly told to teach to the test. And the test is a bogus bunch of crap.
I’ve seen these tests.
They don’t teach to our standards.
These testing companies are lobbying the states to get their test BOUGHT.
This is big $$$ for these companies.
Same with textbook companies in TX.

But he was in the system, had a label, and no one really gave a hoot about him.

kringeesmom on February 20, 2011 at 4:31 PM

IEPs are a joke.
And everything is so politically correct.
It’s disgusting.
Special ed departments are also filled to the gills with kids who have no disabilities other than they are LAZY & diagnosed with phantom ADD/ADHD.
For a small % of kids, that may be a real issue.
But every other BOY is now on drugs like Riddilin.
It’s criminal.
We’ve got a kid who is 18yo with no diagnosed medical condition to explain why he can’t stay awake & his special IEP let’s him come to school at 11AM!!!
He’s only taking 2 classroom classes & the rest are in the special ed room.
If you are in special ed, you need to really have to be in there.
And they need individualized care.
Not this mainstreaming crap.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 5:30 PM

chemman on February 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

And your attitude has to go from the top down. Administrators must support teachers with your attitude. Teachers who fall short should be denied tenure in schools where the expertise and the determination of the teacher is a life or death essential. The best and most effective teachers and administrators should ALWAYS be in the worst schools because this is the only road to success. Unfortuately this rarely happens these days and you can understand why. It’s perfectly normal for an excellent teacher to want the challenge and rewards of college bound students. But it’s the lower end kids who need these teachers the most.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 5:33 PM

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 5:33 PM

Our principal is another school’s reject.
They dismissed him.
The guy that used to teach science & his wife the math teacher both taught at the school our principal is from.
This science guy is the son of a neighbor of ours.
He said that our principal was found to have been FORGING evaluations.
The 1st 4 years I taught at my school I was NEVER EVALUATED.
That is illegal.
The guy is a lazy putz.
And our discipline at our school is falling apart.
We need help as teachers dealing with discipline issues & if a teacher sends a kid to the office or a kid is tardy a lot, NOTHING happens.
I have personally never sent a kid to the office in my years of teaching. I have as of yet to have discipline problems.
But we have kids in classes that are left ALONE for the WHOLE PERIOD.
Our principal is a piece of garbage collecting a salary on the public’s dime.
I want our school board to get rid of this guy.
But they are just as pitiful.
And don’t get me started on our suptd.
Something has to be done.
Everywhere.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 6:06 PM

They thought I was to hard on the poor darlings. I made it clear I wasn’t going to change and they needed the other teachers to rise up to my standards. The bottom line is I don’t accept the excuses about poor environments hindering the students.

chemman on February 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

I don’t either.
And I have been starting to feel the heat from it.
I will NEVER just pass someone bcs I have been pressured to.
I REFUSE to dumb down my class.
And I have failed many.
But I live in a very rural area where most of the parents pressure their kids to get good grades.
I’m lucky.
Our biggest discipline problems are a kid leaving school early or texting in class.
I see bigger issues coming bcs our lack of principal involvement is emboldening the kids.
I foresee the day I am forced out bcs I expect excellence.
An A really means something in my classes.
I cannot in good conscience do anything else.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 6:11 PM

chemman on February 20, 2011 at 5:20 PM

I bought the first bit. Even in bad districts, good teachers can do amazing things. But you’re not making any consideration to the kids who decide to show up half way through class, or not show up more then 2-3 days a week at all. Sure, even a kid from a broken home that has a real thirst for learning can be taught easily. But if you come to a NYC school district and yell at the students all day, while forcing them into their seats so you can lecture for 45 minutes while demanding 100% grades on tests, you’ll have a 3 student classroom by October. Those are students you’ve driven out of the program for the rest of their lives, because their parent(s) certainly don’t care. I’m not calling you a liar, I’m just saying that if you were lucky enough to have classes in a bad district where attendance wasn’t your first and biggest obstacle, then you got really, really lucky.

And I HIGHLY doubt the school district “forced you out” for performing well (aren’t half these posts about the inability of teachers to be let go….?). If you had the secret to educating Americans poor youth, you’d be a billionaire from the book sales and workshop circuit.

There you have it. A 93 percent failure rate, even for a severely depressed city like Central Falls is unacceptable… Sorry teach, no excuses. You know what or get off the pot.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 4:49 PM

We don’t even know what the attendance rates looked like in the district. Sure, a 50% graduation rate looks terrible, but not if the district has a 48% attendance rate. What’s the teen pregnancy rate? Drug convictions for teens in the district? This is all information that directly effects the debate, but it’s no where to be found.

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 6:14 PM

Any given teacher will see a student for 40 minutes a day.

WTF?

Until junior high (grades 7 & 8), I had each teacher for at least 1/3rd of the day. In the lowest grades, more like 1/2 day.

Reorganize the school. Make the teachers spend more time with their students. Disband the union and demand performance.

And, yes, the parents have to commit, too. Are we to believe that 93% of the population of this town wants their children mired in ignorance and poverty?

Crawford on February 20, 2011 at 6:17 PM

IEPs are a joke.
But every other BOY is now on drugs like Riddilin.
If you are in special ed, you need to really have to be in there.
And they need individualized care.
Not this mainstreaming crap.

Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 5:30 PM

IEP’s have more input from the parents then anyone else. In order to even GET an IEP, parential acceptance is required. Even then, getting a student classified as SPED can be a big obstacle for most parents. This whole “the kid likes to sleep” thing is gibberish. Does he have an emotional disturbance? Just because he “looks” normal doesn’t mean he won’t belong in the program. You’re just being nasty.

And the national statistic have boys only slightly outnumbering girls in SPED, and this is mostly because girls tend to be more insular, so they are tougher to diagnose (especially when parents fear the stigma).

And yes, they need individualized care. But in New York, a good Special Ed middle school is going to cost about 70-80k a year per student, at the very least. Just the individualized transport is huge, but between having staff psychologists (which are allowed in SPED programs, but not GENED), individual aids/nurses, and 1 teacher for every 3-4 students, the costs are astronomical. Unfortunately, when people talk about the budget, SPED funding is typically the first thing to go. We scream and yell about cutting school funding, but it’s the kids who really need it the most that suffer the greatest.

A girlfriend of mine is a 5 year vet in a NYC highschool, and is currently teaching a middle school class that includes 10 teens with IEP’s and 10 students with poor achievement/behavior, and only has a first-year special ed teacher to help. Thanks to school funding cuts, the pool of teachers are becoming less skilled as classes become larger and more difficult to manage. This women is going to lose her hair by the time she’s 40 from pulling it out, as the district keeps pressuring her to pass all these students when it takes 25 minutes to sit them down in the morning. And as soon as one of the ED kids starts screaming for no reason, the days over.

But by all means, let’s keep slashing funding so we can cut taxes on the upper income by 2%.

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 6:22 PM

If kids don’t learn, and if teachers aren’t to blame, then teachers aren’t an important part of the process.

Think about it: The kids don’t learn. They don’t learn if teachers make $10000. They don’t learn if teachers make $80000. The teachers are not to blame. Just ask them. So why wouldn’t we pay them the $10000 (or less) if the result is the same?

It goes for teachers the same as it goes for President Obama: if nothing that ever happens is your fault, then you are useless.

Kohath on February 20, 2011 at 2:34 PM

Direct hit. Case closed.

mr.blacksheep on February 20, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Well we all know that the Union will start blaming this on class size, neighborhood, indifferent parents, not enough money etc etc–and these are truly all mitigating factors. But in the end a really good teacher can control his or her class, can get MOST of them to perform at least minimally and get the respect(though sometimes grudging)of students, parents and other professionals. I think the key is self respect. A good teacher has an inner standard that rarely deviates and they hold themselves and their students to this. Yes, you are here to learn and yes, I am here to help you and let’s get to it. Many, not all, of the teachers at the rally in WI do not exhibit this.. or, for starters, they would not have walked off their jobs and let their kids down. Like a parent you have an obligation to be there.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Until junior high (grades 7 & 8), I had each teacher for at least 1/3rd of the day. In the lowest grades, more like 1/2 day.

Junior high is where the kids start dropping out. Most make it to 9th grade.

And, yes, the parents have to commit, too. Are we to believe that 93% of the population of this town wants their children mired in ignorance and poverty?

Crawford on February 20, 2011 at 6:17 PM

You’d be surprised. Look at the demos of the town (wiki has them laid out). 6% of the population holding degrees makes me think that the educated leave, while the drop-outs stay and raise their kids.

I’m seeing a lot of rancor here being directed at administrators and principles, and I completely agree. Most principles and superintendent’s aren’t teachers, but “managers”. I mean, look at NYC’s new chancellor, who had to have the teaching requirement WAIVED by Bloomberg’s cronies. How are they supposed to run a school if they’ve never been in a classroom?

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 6:27 PM

We are, however, being increasingly told to teach to the test. And the test is a bogus bunch of crap.
I’ve seen these tests. Badger40 on February 20, 2011 at 6:11 PM

My son took one of these tests (pre No Child) he scored a 98 percentile in math. The next year not so good, one year he was almost off the charts in Language Arts, the next not so much. Years later he told me that whenever they gave him one of those tests he would simply fill in the bubbles to make a nice picture. ‘splains everything.

Charlotte Mason says that before children can learn, they must first be taught to obey. That made a lot of sense to me. I spent the K-1 years “teaching” obedience and following directions, then started with phonics, now we read, write and do memory work. It seems to be going well, my baby is reading like a champ, and gets better every day. My standards are to raise a child that can read at college level, write 4 complex term papers her last 2 years of school, speak well (debate, dramatic readings etc), know her history, basic science with an emphasis on one or 2 areas of her own interest) math to Algebra (or further if interested), get a job, keep a job, manage money and make a large purchase (car, insurance etc.), how to manage a home, and how to conduct herself with honesty and integrity in life. She will not be able to stay on moms health insurance at the age of 26. I could care less what the state thinks that she should learn. I could care less whether she chooses to go to college. I do want her to continue “teaching” herself long after I am gone.

kringeesmom on February 20, 2011 at 6:37 PM

Don’t know the stats for Central Falls, but have ridden down Broad Street at the times the kids were leaving school there. Obvious drug dealers there, they make no attempt to hide it. Solicitation of various kinds, also in plain sight just to point out what you probably already guessed. RI has turned it’s back on these problems whether for lack of money or lack of interest, I don’t know. But the area is blighted to a degree one usually only sees in inner cities.(except, oddly enough, for the northern most area which houses a large Catholic church and parochial school..draw whatever conclusions you will from this. I can’t explain it.)

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 6:40 PM

I am a teacher, 27 years and teach 4-6. My school is mostly Hispanic & yes we struggle with AYP, but our students are learning. I have never been union, nor do I want to. The problem in education is indeed the union which protects incompetent teachers who cannot be fired because of tenure;yet it is also the union that fights for our health care, our salaries, and our contracts. I do not believe we need a union to fight for us, but it is the “etched” rule, until it changes. I have worked in other states where liberal brainwashing occurs and have been in Kansas for the last 20 where methodology is replaced with learning & accountability–a good thing. We have a long distance to go but there are 3 changes we must see to allow our students to learn again: First, a return to religion (lost in 63) would help us return to be having better morals, next, ostracize the unions and grade us for what we do each year, not what we did 5 years ago, and finally quit passing students because they are getting older–make students & teachers accountable by entrusting us to become administrators. Too much money is spent on principals, assistants, directors who direct nothing, and have their favorites. But it is only a beginning!

mistert1950 on February 20, 2011 at 6:43 PM

mistert1950 on February 20, 2011 at 6:43 PM

The Union also provides lawyers for teachers that may be sued by parents or harrassed by disgruntled principals or school boards. This is something most teachers cannot afford without the Union. It’s one of the things that keeps many teachers on board even were they able to opt out.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 6:56 PM

The Union also provides lawyers for teachers that may be sued by parents or harrassed by disgruntled principals or school boards. This is something most teachers cannot afford without the Union. It’s one of the things that keeps many teachers on board even were they able to opt out.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 6:56 PM

The school district should provide a lawyer. Plus, how many times do principles and schools boards harrass good teachers?

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 7:15 PM

darwin on February 20, 2011 at 7:15 PM

More often than you might think. After all, the chairman of the school board’s daughter just graduated and needs a job!! Remember, these are politicians and apt to behave in like fashion. Also, some principals want to get rid of teacher’s on their staffs who make waves, if they can’t get them transferred, why not drive them out other ways. Trust me when I say that man an excellent teacher has been down that or similar roads. You seem to think that this is approval of the teacher’s unions on my part. And, I never said that the union should be disbanded, just that they should have their wings clipped as Walker is attempting to do.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 7:25 PM

Well, well, well…….
After the end of the protests yesterday, teacher’s can be seen boarding school buses used for public education.

tencole on February 20, 2011 at 3:10 PM

There were long lines of school buses waiting at Olin-Turville Park between John Nolen Drive and the lake to take the teachers and union members to the capital. They had full police protection and were limiting who went into the area to park.

Fallon on February 20, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Fallon on February 20, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Who pays for all this? Especially the police protection.

jeanie on February 20, 2011 at 7:34 PM

But by all means, let’s keep slashing funding so we can cut taxes on the upper income by 2%.

Rainsford on February 20, 2011 at 6:22 PM

Who do you think start businesses and create jobs?
Here’s a hint: it ain’t the unions.

annoyinglittletwerp on February 20, 2011 at 8:28 PM

I am sure Rainman and Dr. Z will complain about how hard it is to get rid of bad teacher just as they do about getting rid of a bad public school student./ heh

CWforFreedom on February 20, 2011 at 2:17 PM

Sniping again I see.

Why can’t you at least wait until I make a comment on a particular thread to mention me?

It is hard to get rid of a bad teacher because of union protections. It is hard to get rid of a bad student because of Liberal legislation protecting them. What part of that do you not understand?

Learn to argue a point and back down when it’s clear you don’t know what you’re talking about.

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 20, 2011 at 10:12 PM

First, a return to religion (lost in 63) would help us return to be having better morals, next, ostracize the unions and grade us for what we do each year, not what we did 5 years ago, and finally quit passing students because they are getting older–make students & teachers accountable by entrusting us to become administrators. Too much money is spent on principals, assistants, directors who direct nothing, and have their favorites. But it is only a beginning!

mistert1950 on February 20, 2011 at 6:43 PM

I agree with that part. But I’ve had to get on kids just to stand up and say the Pledge, and most I’ve seen won’t even say it.

As for admins, yes and no. The discipline deans are very helpful if they’re good, but I think for the continually disruptive students alternative programs should be more widely available-more expensive to taxpayers maybe, but perhaps down the line a few less serving years in prison-and maybe fewer deans and other admins in the main schools, and instead working one on one with the more troubled youths.

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 20, 2011 at 10:36 PM

I know a teacher who I beleive to be knowledgeable. He complains regularly about curriculim changes every 2 years or more often, administrator changes similarly often with failures getting a new start and higher salery elsewhere. He also complains about rules which hamstring any ability to discipline kids. It seems most of his kids are so apathetic that they won’t even fill in the blanks while watching an in class movie even when he stops the move and points out that an answer was just given. And parents don’t want to hear that thier darling is not doing well. And he’s pressured to pass kids. Admin says that answering a math question with a sentence or two is good enough to pass the class.

In short, the system of institutionalizing kids is systemicaly rotten from top to bottom with rare individual exceptions. And no one has the authority to clean it out. The buck gets passed around among kids, parents, teachers, admin, school boards, and state funding in a never ending chain that never actualy fixes anything. Tons of money is spent on what should be criminal negligence. And that is one reason why I favor vouchers, the competition that ensues, and the greater parental involvement.

AnotherOpinion on February 20, 2011 at 10:41 PM

I know a teacher who I beleive to be knowledgeable. He complains regularly about curriculim changes every 2 years or more often…And he’s pressured to pass kids. Admin says that answering a math question with a sentence or two is good enough to pass the class.

Much of that sounds painfully familiar to me.

In short, the system of institutionalizing kids is systemicaly rotten from top to bottom with rare individual exceptions. And no one has the authority to clean it out. The buck gets passed around among kids, parents, teachers, admin, school boards, and state funding in a never ending chain that never actualy fixes anything. Tons of money is spent on what should be criminal negligence. And that is one reason why I favor vouchers, the competition that ensues, and the greater parental involvement.

AnotherOpinion on February 20, 2011 at 10:41 PM

I’m not against vouchers, but they won’t cover the costs (including books and various fees) that most private schools require. Also, private schools are businesses so a parent would have to consider that angle. And what if there aren’t any private schools where you live? What if your kid isn’t accepted? How is taxpayers’ money going to be accounted for through a voucher system?

Dunno-the voucher system sounds like another form of boondoggery/bureaucracy to me. Many public schools and even whole districts are very successful. I suspect the paralysis of bureaucracy, and maybe in some areas unions, in not being able to fix the bad ones.

The teacher-haters don’t get that they as taxpayers will still foot the voucher/charter school bill, that public school teachers would be hired by private schools should the public system shrink, and those teachers would demand higher pay and more benefits…then cost of tuition will go up, the vouchers would have to be increased and so on.

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 21, 2011 at 1:13 AM