Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by midwestteacher, Jan 4, 2011.
Jan 6, 2011
So, working your contracted hours is detrimental to student success??
I personally find this quite disheartening. I spend hours outside of the classroom planning for school. I carpool and therefore it is difficult to stay after for extended periods of time, but yet you can always see me carrying a bag full of papers to grade or lessons to plan. I take them home and work on them. My principal wouldn't be able to see that unless they accompanied me home. I also have an email address that they can contact me on at any time and a website. If I were at that school would I have to document every time I thought of something school related? Ridiculous!
As a principal, I love it when I see a teacher walking out the gate while I'm still wrapping up dismissal. They need to get home, they have families, a life outside of work.
On the other hand, when I leave campus and I see teacher cars still in the lot, I worry about them. I worry about burn-out, working harder instead of smarter, etc.
Teachers need to work their contract hours. The work and the kids will still be there tomorrow when they return.
hmmm, I don't see how anyone can work only contracted hours and give everything they've got to the kids. However, I definitely don't think teachers should be judged down because they don't stay over......That is crazy!
That's a wonderful thing to hear a principal say.
We were expected to come in on the weekends. It just never occurred to me that this is outside my contract hours and I'm burning out. I did it to catch up and to not drown as deeply, but I had no weekends to myself, or to rest. I now have a totally new perspective on how to function better when I do return to work.
I am nearly always at school longer than my administrators...longer than the principal without exception. Of course, they are not on campus long after school dismisses. Obviously I would prefer to be home, but I often find the quiet time in my classroom to be enjoyable and it helps alleviate stress during the day. If I worked only during school hours I would not be prepared, period. And I feel I work pretty smart...but hard, too.
Although I'm daydreaming of being a housewife, I wouldn't say it's due to burnout...it's because I find myself disagreeing with too much.
ETA: Even though I'm one of those who is willing and able to work beyond the expected hours, I still find this evaluation to be maddening!
Jan 9, 2011
I have something like that on my evaluation only it's a lot more specific. You earn a flat number of points up to 3 I think for volunteering at a minimum of 2 school events. So I picked two that wouldn't interfere with my home commitments and did those. That seems a little more fair than this ambiguous thing the OP has going on. Granted I don't agree that I should have to volunteer my personal time to increase my overall evaluation. I have a family too!
To me, the purpose of adding this criteria is to see if the teacher is FAIR & genuinely cares about the success of all their students & students' parents EQUALLY. Anyone can talk the talk & say they're fair & treat all their students the same. I guess the districts want to make sure the teachers walk the walk.
One example, when the teacher creates the seating chart & changes it throughout the year, are certain students usually or always sitting in the back &/or maybe ignored moreso than other students?
I've been a substitute for a LONG time & I certainly notice that certain students are many times assigned to sit in the back of the classroom/towards the back/in the last row when I see who they are as I look at the seating chart. It can't always be because they behave badly or whatever the reason is for having them in the back. That's way too much of a coincidence to me!
No one misunderstand me. I'm not saying that teachers don't have enough to worry about & don't have enough on their plates. I'm simply saying why I think they're adding this criteria.
I'm not trying to be critical, but I don't see the correlation between your post and being expected to work outside contracted hours. I also don't see a correlation to working beyond contracted hours showing fairness (You didn't say that, I'm just adding to the debate). I rarely work outside my contracted hours unless I have a late meeting or I have volunteered at a school function. I have been doing the same job for a long time, I am very organized, and I can get everything done during the school day. To be fair, I also have a wonderful assistant who helps me.
I do, however, have an answer to why some children sit in the back. I have a couple of really tall children and they block the view of the children who are shorter if I have those tall children sit in the front. I also have a few children who have a need to stand as they work. I don't see this as a behavior issue;it is just the way they are able to concentrate and focus. Again, having those children sit in the front would block the other children. I also have some children who prefer to sit in the back. As long as they are able to complete their work and don't use it as an opportunity to fool around, I don't have a problem with their choice of seating. There are a multitude of reasons why some children seem to always sit in the back...it isn't always a teacher showing preferential treatment to some children.
Back to the original post, and as I have stated before, I don't understand how the number of hours you work can determine your effectiveness as a teacher.
Ms. I, I'm not able to read "fair and equal" from this evaluation standard. How does the seating chart relate to a teacher committing his or her personal time?
ETA: Oh, not ganging up on you...I was typing while the Swan posted.
I also have a few valid reasons for sitting students in the back.
I also think it's unfortunate that you think that students who are at the back are ignored. As a teacher, it is my job to reach every student... I don't put anyone that bothers me at the back so I can ignore them, and the fact that a substitute teacher would assume that of a teacher is disgusting, imo.
I use siting in the back as one example because (some, didn't say all) teachers don't tend to pay as much attention, give eye contact, etc. to those in the back as much as to those in the front...unless you can tell me you walk around the whole room equally, but there's no way because teachers naturally teach from the front of the room. That's why everyone should be given a chance to sit in the front rows, middle rows, & back equally.
We have to look from the kids' perspective & be sensitive to their feelings. Some kids may wonder why they're usually or always sitting in the back of the room & they have no idea why. Kids tend to know that being in the front is usually better. For example, everyone wants to be the line leader. Who's going to raise their hand to be the last person in line?
Now again, I'm not saying no teacher realizes this. Many are aware & do things thoughtfully, but then there are always others who don't care as much.
So if this new criteria is commitment of personal time to students' needs, maybe when the principals are doing their evaluations, they'll observe how the kids are being treated who sit towards the back of the room too. Some teachers, believe it or not, NEVER walk around the room & circulate.
Again, not sure how the seating plan correlates to commitment of personal time to student needs, but it is difficult for a guest in a classroom to make a judgement based on where students are sitting. (In fact, in my classroom, the students near the front of the room are often those who need my attention the most). I teach from all places in the room--front, back, and both sides--it is one of my class management strategies.
Ms. I, I think you are misunderstanding...this is not about teachers giving personal or one-on-one attention to students, rather teachers giving more of their personal time beyond the school day hours to their students and profession.
First... The original topic... I have several things I do outside of my contract hours (Student Council, Young Ladies League, Booster Club, and obviously planning/grading) but that doesn't make me a better teacher than people who don't have that kind of time. Some of my coworkers live pretty far from work, I am only 10 min away. My mom works at the same school as me and my sister is a sub. Its easier for me to stay after, and sometimes my kids will come to my school events with me. It's not a fair eval tool in my opinion.
Second... Hijack topic.... Maybe it is age/grade specific but my kids don't want to be the line leader. I don't know too many teachers who put behavior problems in the back. Talkers usually need to be spaced out throughout the room. The way my room is set up I have eye contact with every student as long as they are actually looking at me. My biggest behavior student sits in the front row where I could tap his desk when need be.
To Ms. I -
In middle school, most students prefer to sit in the back of the room, so sometimes I use it as a reward for certain students. Also, I work in a school that has 85% of the students on free or reduced lunches, and a lot of students who need glasses don't have them. The front of my room is usually filled with students who can't see the board from the back!
Point is, if you're ever my sub, don't assume that I put the same students at the back of the room each time because I don't want to deal with them! How insulting to my professional judgment!
My seating charts are done alphabetically. So the first kid whose name starts with an A is probably in the front of most of his classes, and the kid whose name starts with Z is probably at the back. As to all the ohter kids, though, it depends on who else is in the class.
That said, I'm not sure how this relates to either the original topic or to the quality of education the kids are receiving. There's no correlation between seats in class and grades, or seats in class and number of detentions or seats in class and anything else I can think of. Aside from kids who have height, vision or hearing issues, it's strictly a matter of the alphabet.
Back to the original topic: We are expected to be at a number of extra things during the year: registration, orientations, cocktail parties run by the parent's association. We're also expected to be on hand for extra help for about 20 minutes per day, unless we have either special permission or coaching obligations. Beyond that, it's up to us to determine how best to help our students.
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