Education cross-over into Facilitation, an informal interview.

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Securis, May 10, 2012.

  1. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    May 10, 2012

    How's everyone? Good I hope.

    With my new job, we have an ongoing training class where we discuss topics of various themes and subject matters as they relate to our organization and our progam facilitation. We have been discussing leadership in various professional circumstances, especially experiential learning in an outdoor setting, but now our conversation has turned toward education. The topic coming up in our next meeting on Tuesday or possibly Wednesday is what are the top 10 major concerns that teachers face today?

    I know that here in NY, APPR (sp?) is being implemented. Budget cuts, job loss, behavioral issues, administrative issues, etc., so forth, and so on. I'm sure there are a lot of topics that can be addressed and I hope to get the best cross-section so that I can report what You have to offer. I thank you in advance for your effort if you decide to make a post. However, I offer one more challenge, if it pleases you.

    I would like posts to be formatted as follows:

    • APPR - an incredibly large document including numerous indicators and sub-indicators that admin will use to assess teacher performance in the following year. Extra information if you want. And how you feel about the issue.
    • Class size - Information to follow
    • Job loss

    There is no particular order nor is my list of items all inclusive. Let it rip and again thank you for your help.
     
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  3. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    May 11, 2012

    Nothing. Disappointing. This isn't a report or anything to get anyone in trouble. Just looking for some constructive information to pass along into an organization that works with, helps train, and serves teachers.
     
  4. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    May 12, 2012

    I'm not really sure what you are looking for and how you want it posted...
     
  5. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    May 12, 2012

    As a teacher what are your concerns as a professional in regards to the field of education both locally and possibly nationally? List them however you like and give a brief explanation of why it is a concern for you. An example might be increasing class size and shrinking budgets. Another might be new policies that disrupt the teaching process but are seemingly the most important thing on the agenda. Also, separate the concerns so that each one can be easily identified as different from the last. If you only have one important concern to address, great.! If you want to dump 50 concerns on me, great!

    I hope that clarified things.
     
  6. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    May 12, 2012

    Over testing our students---my district spends 6 weeks of the school year administering district and state tests to our students.

    New evaluation systems for teachers---may rely too heavy on test data, growth model doesn't work for highest students, proficiency model doesn't work for lowest students.

    Shrinking budgets---losing important resources and staff (specials classes cut, RtI personnel cut, no money to buy books, larger class sizes, etc)

    Eliminating classes due to test scores and budgets---many elective classes are being cut and many schools are not teaching science and social studies to get more time for math and reading.
     
  7. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    May 12, 2012

    In addition: Wasting precious money.
    Do we really need new textbooks every five or six years? How much do math or reading concepts change?
    Do we need to spend millions on testing companies, especially when the tests change every few years and have to be rewritten?
    Do we need to spend countless dollars on "new" programs that claim to be the be all, end all to solve the problems in education?
     
  8. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    May 12, 2012

    Do we need to spend so much money on administrative jobs?
     
  9. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    May 12, 2012

    Media and political aims to dismantle public education while claiming to "reform" it.

    Attacking tenure with nothing to replace it in due process, this will lessen the opportunities for teachers to stand up for the children and stand up for quality education.

    People making up things like common core standards and evaluations who have no experience teaching. Basing the evaluations on a single week's test scores is ridiculous.

    Over testing the children, with tests made by someone not actually teaching the child which makes the test not very valid.

    Poor quality professional development.

    The attempts to get rid of senior teachers without any reason except they cost more-being supported by BS propaganda from the federal government on down.

    Shrinking budgets.

    Having class sizes go back to 30 or so children.

    Having the farthest from the schools people, corporations, and politicians deem what is a good idea for solving problems in schools without bothering to double check with teachers or god forbid actually use the people who know the most work out methods for the individual schools and support the methods suggested and developed. Using ideas that have no research that actually supports the idea as the next BIG solution and ignoring things that have quality research because it does not support "know it all with no training's" idea. A good example for quality support would be aides in the classroom, class size reduction, or quality free preschool for all children at a certain income level. While both merit pay and value added have research showing them to be a waste of time on improving teaching quality both are still being pushed as a great idea of how to save education.
     
  10. CanukTeach

    CanukTeach Companion

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    May 12, 2012

    A number of things are v. similar in Canada and I would echo concerns about waste and the media diverting attention because it is always easy to blame teachers.

    The 2 biggest thing I've noticed that is different between Canada and the US (that I find shocking) are:

    1 - How often American kids are testing using standardized tests.
    2 - How much more it costs to do PD in the US. In Canada, almost all PD is done by teachers for teachers and the presenters are paid enough to cover their costs but are not actually paid for the PD (they basically attend for free).
     
  11. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 12, 2012

    I think that we focus too much on breadth of information rather than depth of information. Our students are expected to know topics a mile wide and an inch deep, when I think they would be better served learning about a topic an inch wide and a mile deep.

    I think schools are becoming social service centers rather than education centers. In addition to educating children, schools now have to provide vaccinations, vision and hearing tests, clothing, food, psychological counseling, hygiene supplies, shoes, referrals for more extensive medical treatment, parenting classes, and myriad other items and services. This sort of relates to my above point: schools can't be all things to all students, but we can at least do an excellent job teaching children.

    I think another huge problem is teacher-bashing and union-bashing. It's difficult to advocate for the things we need to do our jobs when doing so causes us to be labelled money-grubbers or worse.
     
  12. Securis

    Securis Cohort

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    May 14, 2012

    I thought I'd report that your thoughts and input were well received. Thank you for your time!:thumb:
     
  13. TeachOn

    TeachOn Habitué

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    May 15, 2012

    Too much money spent on administration, too many stupid rules and procedures and forms from above (all the way to Washington), too much spent on SPED (sorry), classes too big (not here, but elsewhere), not enough special programs for the stronger students, absurdly high level of importance attached to athletics, weak college curricula resulting in teachers who do not know their subjects, emphasis on graduation rates thus dropping standards to stay in school: I could go on.

    My solutions? Abolish all federal and state departments of ed, rewrite SPED law to restore balance with other aspects of education, fully implement national voucher system to include private and religious schools (one supercomputer and a few nerds can accomplish this: no need for a federal bureaucracy), further open up certification schemes (reducing power and role of college department-of-ed nonsense, emphasizing practice and mentorship), legal changes to make it easier to remove students who deprive others of a quality learning experience, put teacher assessment on a peer basis: I could go on.
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    May 15, 2012

    That's a particular sore point with me. The redundancy is breathtaking. In my district, a LOT of extra curricular activities were cut in the middle school, and my 9 year old is in a class of 29. Yet we have endless administrators whose job descriptions are, for all intents and purposes, identical.

    Today is Super Tuesday, the day when the majority of Long Island school districts have their budget vote. New York State recently mandated a cap of 3% as far as increases go. Yet a number of local districts have somehow found a way to circumvent that law and are proposing budgets with larger increases.
     

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