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Year 4 Day 65- Thanksgiving Holiday Update

by admin on November 20th, 2006

Well to be sure, despite our lack of a raise, I’m thankful for my job. The negotiation process doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. Our district has voted in a new charter school, despite protests from the teachers. The school board had their minds made up a long time ago, so no matter what happened…the school was coming. The funniest part of the whole ordeal is that our local newspaper has become a battle ground between district admin. and teachers.

Teachers claim there wasn’t any logic, or proper research done before voting on this school. The Admin., of course, say that there was. Teachers say they were asked to write the grant, and then forced out of the process. The Admin., say they weren’t. Those are the basics of the arguement. Add to it the fact that everyone in our district is afraid of the Admin, and the way the handle people who disagree with them…and you’ve got an interesting set of circumstances going on in the paper. There are many nasty comments left by ‘anonymous’ in response to the articles the Admin., have written in support of their charter school.

I would say in this circumstance, I actually agree mostly with the teachers. 1) I do agree a charter school of this type was actually a good idea. Having kids focsuing on outdoor learning, could be a really good thing. I think 90% of the teachers in our district felt the same way. 2) You need teachers helping to write the charter, for the entire process. Teachers are the ones who will be doing the teaching, so to me, it makes a lot of sense to have them write most of the charter..or at least let them focus on the ‘classroom’ parts. 3) The admin. waited until AFTER the charter had passed and was inevitable, to ask the parents of the kids what they thought about it.

Now I’m a parent…and I can assure you that if my childs school was doing things without asking me what I thought…like uhm, let’s say changing the entire school program…I’d pull my kids. The new program has no bus service, and no food service. Funny, but our district doesn’t really see any of the funds from the school.

One reason the district wanted to keep the school out of the teachers hands as far as writing it was to keep the teachers union out of the school. This is also going to be highly failed logic. Yes, in a few circumstances, I see the union as protecting bad teachers from being removed. It happens. There are bad employees at every job that still have jobs because of one reason or another. Here’s what is going to happen at this school. Any veteren teachers out there, aren’t going to leave a contract-secure job to go to this job. This job will have less pay, and longer working days…someone has to drive these kids to the great outdoors to teach them…that’s going to be up to the parents and teachers. If there isn’t going to be any extra pay, or benefit for the teachers to work longer hours…most wouldn’t. What this school is going to end up with is a bunch of 1st or 2nd year teachers, who, frankly, are still learning how to teach. They’ll try hard, and end up leaving as soon as something more secure arrives.

The district has failed to gain the support of the teachers. They have, I would assume, upset a lot of parents by not including them in the process before they made any final choices. The articles I’ve read in the paper basically give me the idea that the district is sick of the dumb low income kids we normally get at our schools, and we want some wealthier ones, with higher test scores. That hasn’t been written exactly, but from what I can gather by reading between the lines…that’s the just of it.

The mudslinging int he paper is priceless, albeit, a little sad. Teachers are venting in the online version, because that’s the only place they feel safe to do so. The general public sees this, and thinks the teachers are all a bunch of whiners. Which is exactly what it looks like. I wish the general public could spend a few years coming to work where we do…and really see how messed up our district is.

One of the articles a lady wrote, who helped write the charter from the admin. side was comical. She basically accused the teachers of being too lazy to help, which, knowing the ladies in question, I highly doubt. This lady used to be a teacher as well. I went to a conference with her. She and her friend (who was not part of the conference, yet shared a place with her that the district paid for) Failed to show up for the sessions the following day, because she was out boozing it up. Awesome. I’m not saying that I really cared that much, I have done the same sort of thing (even though I show up for my sessions) I just found it humorous, she had the gall call someone out in the paper for being lazy….

It’s just a hard road to be on for the district. Ego vs. Ego. Really, we’re all here to help kids learn…but when we argue against one another, for respect, and consideration in planning…the kids lose.

Other than that, life has been really swell. I have other issues to worry about quite frankly…I would like a raise, and I will support that cause…I think our district office cares more about their egos than their employees and students…but I’m not going to get into a debate over it.

I do know I like my school. I lke my boss. I like everyone I work with, most of the time. I like the kids here. I’m thankful I work where I do, and 4 years ago I never could have written this…and that makes me more thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving.

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One Comment
  1. The Gambler permalink

    I’m thankful for the Captain and his incorrectly spelled words….’gaul’ should be ‘gall’ and there is an ‘o’ instead of an ‘e’ in ‘humerous.’

    Injoi da tirkee an Thencksgeven.

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