Does anyone have administrators that micromanage what you do in the classroom?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Ms.Holyoke, Mar 25, 2019.

  1. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2015
    Messages:
    1,179
    Likes Received:
    376

    Mar 30, 2019

    I had one that got so bad, I quit mid-year.
    She started coming into my classroom, telling me how to teach while I was teaching, sometimes she would just take over ("here, let me show you"). She started doing my lesson plans for me and telling me what I could or couldn't put on the walls.
    No, it wasn't my first year. It was actually my 3rd year working under her. She never did any of this prior to that year. She loved everything I did and trusted me and always sent other teachers to me if they needed any ideas. So I don't know what changed.
    Then she got really mad I took 2 days off for vacation, which I had already gotten approved from the people above her.
    So I said, "okay, here is my notice, I will not be coming back after my vacation"
     
    Backroads likes this.
  2. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    4,196
    Likes Received:
    1,116

    Mar 30, 2019

    I should’ve given a bit more explanation. My comment was written on the heels of yesterday’s meeting with the superintendent. We got the “you’re-not-good-enough-and-your-scores-need-to-improve” speech.
    I finished our site testing schedule, though, and were only administering tests in the AM with a 2 hour max per day. I also included snack time (PTA purchased snacks for each class for each day of testing) and a stretch/brain break during the testing block.
    It’s hard—especially when we are told that the kids’ scores are a reflection of our effectiveness as administrators.
     
    Backroads likes this.
  3. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Messages:
    5,831
    Likes Received:
    683

    Mar 30, 2019

    I'm in agreement with the comment about teachers being there to teach. However, it's completely inappropriate that they told students they were working towards a "fun day" and then took it away. That will have all kinds of consequences with students trusting the teachers and admin down the road. They never should have said it could happen if they weren't serious about it. If you change your mind, fine- don't ever do it again, but don't take away something that was already promised.

    The rest of it doesn't seem that micro-managing to me. I think you'll run into similar expectations (or other expectations that you may not like, even if not these exact ones) anywhere. The extreme focus on data and test scores means that all admin are going to be extra concerned about what's going on in classrooms. My dad works in one of the wealthiest schools in his state and he still has the same pressure, so I don't think it's just title 1 schools either. Their scores are obviously very good, but they have pressure to keep that up and get the few kids who aren't passing to pass. One year my dad had 89% pass the state reading test and he literally cried and thought he was in danger of losing his job. He prepared this speech for his admin about being "humbled" by those scores and shared a plan to avoid that for the next year. I'm in an extremely low SES school and there would be dancing in the streets if we got those scores.
     
  4. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 30, 2019

    Can I just tell you that are just too sensible? You and your logic.
     
  5. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    1,236

    Mar 31, 2019

    YTG's reply underscores the problem that testing has brought to our educational system...students and schools are numbers...teachers and administrators are numbers...no one is worth their salt unless the numbers are good...
    Hence, we have micromanaging administrators who are trying to keep their own jobs.
    And the good ones give up and leave...
     
    Backroads and MsCatherine like this.
  6. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 31, 2019

    But numbers drive the global economy. They are used for literally almost everything, so it’s kind of hard not to base things around them. Businesses, for example, make annual quarterly reports about their profit margins and how well their stocks do in the stock market. Companies and governments look at facts and figures to make determinations about the effectiveness of programs and policies all the time. Just about about every part of our society is built around numbers as progress is entirely data driven, so I don’t see why that’s surprising to people that teaching is, too.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2019
    greendream likes this.
  7. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2004
    Messages:
    3,636
    Likes Received:
    205

    Mar 31, 2019

    I have a student who has been absent 59 (!) days, so far, this year. Yes, his test scores count for me.
     
  8. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    1,722
    Likes Received:
    499

    Mar 31, 2019

    Wow...and I thought I had it bad with a student who has been absent 32 days!
     
  9. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,403
    Likes Received:
    1,236

    Mar 31, 2019

    Yes, there are numbers in the business world. But, there are people in schools. The damage that testing stress does to people far out weighs some business quarterly earnings.
    Yes, data is important. Since I have taught for more than 40 years, I think I can reliably report that data has always been collected, but in a much less stressful manner before the testing mania evolved.
    I am just suggesting that those in power recognize that we are dealing with human beings here not spread sheets.
     
    Backroads, MrsC, Aces and 1 other person like this.
  10. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 31, 2019

    In situations like these, they (the powers that be) should only count students who have regularly been in your class all year. That’s where I am 100% in agreement with you and my administrators don’t count truant students in the data, although very few of our students are truant.
     
  11. Aces

    Aces Habitué

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2018
    Messages:
    772
    Likes Received:
    405

    Mar 31, 2019

    I wanted to add that in the business world, if we stopped treating employees like numbers and started treating them like people with unique talents and stories then we would truly see a new dawn.
     
  12. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2017
    Messages:
    1,470
    Likes Received:
    1,009

    Mar 31, 2019

    This is true. Is the business world really what we ought to be emulating in our schools?
     
    Aces likes this.
  13. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 31, 2019

    So the alternative is to what, emulate non-real world situations for students? That helps them how?
     
  14. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 31, 2019

    A company cannot stay in business if you just rely on intuition. You have to use the data to make important mathematical decisions for pretty much everything.
     
    greendream likes this.
  15. Aces

    Aces Habitué

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2018
    Messages:
    772
    Likes Received:
    405

    Mar 31, 2019

    My uncle is a business man. He's a VP at Walmart. You know what he would tell you? He would tell you that when big companies take care of their employees, empower them, care for them, and help them rise, they will always take care of the customers who take care of the business. Your employees are the backbone of your business. That's what makes your company great or terrible. If you always treat them like numbers, don't be surprised when you drive out the great and you're left with the terrible.
     
    Backroads, swansong1 and MsCatherine like this.
  16. MsCatherine

    MsCatherine Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2017
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    2

    Mar 31, 2019

    Yes, our main priority is to teach, but as teachers we also need to read our class and be flexible at times. We do much more than just "teach". Building relationships, inspiring students and promoting health and well-being are just as important.

    After a 4 hour test, it is not unreasonable to give them a break. You might deliver a regular lesson, but it isn't very useful if they are overwhelmed and don't absorb the information. When I was a student, we had a bunch of fun activities each day after testing and a class party at the end. I don't think my results or education suffered. I remember my 8 year old self learning some awesome magic tricks from my teacher and feeling a lot less stress.
    Sometimes, less is more. So many studies show that breaks help increase student productivity.

    I rarely have time to show students movies, but if there are only 5 students in my class the day before the break, I am going to find a movie to show them.

    And being docked on an evaluation for 2 minutes of clean up? Cleaning up is part of doing science.
     
  17. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    3,631
    Likes Received:
    977

    Mar 31, 2019

    I’m not saying that you should treat them as numbers, but that you *should* use numbers for evaluation purposes. ALL businesses do this as do governments the world over. After all, all measurements are numerical or numerical in nature. To think or say otherwise is disingenuous.
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2019
  18. Aces

    Aces Habitué

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2018
    Messages:
    772
    Likes Received:
    405

    Mar 31, 2019

    ...I never said you shouldn't?
     
  19. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,105
    Likes Received:
    1,432

    Apr 1, 2019

    I couldn't help wonder if it were the job speaking instead of the man.
     
  20. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Messages:
    3,105
    Likes Received:
    1,432

    Apr 1, 2019

    I like data just fine.

    But while grades and scores may be numbers, people aren't.

    And I worry too much of the data measured is more or less useless data chosen more for the ease of data collected than any real long-term focus of improvement.

    I'm a clock-watcher by nature. I like timeliness and I like things to fit into neat little time slots. But can we really prove, with data, that two more minutes of a lesson taught for the sake of adding two minutes while taking away breaks and processing time really and significantly improve test scores? And not just test scores, future long-term success of students? Or is does it just sound nice and filling in every minute just something easy to measure?
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 266 (members: 0, guests: 243, robots: 23)
test