Obama and Head Start

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by raynepoe, Nov 9, 2011.

  1. raynepoe

    raynepoe Companion

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    Nov 9, 2011

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  3. EDUK8_ME

    EDUK8_ME Cohort

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    I am all for being accountable and I do believe that federal money should not be given to any program without accountability on both ends. However, I too would be concern regarding the supposed "teaching benchmarks". Accountability cannot and should not fall only on the teachers' shoulders.
     
  4. raynepoe

    raynepoe Companion

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    What scares me is we ALREADY spend way to much time assessing (IMHO) the children. My classroom is 20 children aged 3-5 with a teacher and asst. teacher. These are our assessments now, and next year is a review year... what else will they make us do... I want to teach!

    We do anecdotal notes (4 a week per child)
    Alphabet Recognition Chart (3 X a year)
    PALs testing (Phonological Awareness) 2 x a year
    Lap-D screen at the begining of the year (to see if there are dev. delays)
    Ages and Stages (parents fill out about behavior) beginning of the year
    Lap 3 a 12 page book that assesses where each learner is in regards to gross motor, fine motor, pre-writing, literacy, self help, cognitive, and personal/social that we integrate into the computer and it spits out HS objectives for each child
    Not to mention creating paper trails/referring children who need special services...

    I wish we could focus more on what is happening in the classrooms and less on the statistics.....and this does not bode well for that!
     
  5. Teacheskidz

    Teacheskidz Rookie

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    Wow! This is crazy! We HS teachers work our butts off and teach these children who are needy and in some cases come from bad homes. It is not easy! It is mentally and physically exhausting!
    WHAT MORE ARE THEY GOING TO MAKE US DO? :eek:
     
  6. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Hopefully they will think smart and not hard when creating expectations for accountability! Raynepoe - in many cases, schools are already collecting a lot of good data, such as in your case, that can be used to report on accountability. So, it may be that nothing new will be added to your plate. Or, if something is added, something else is taken away.

    I try to remind people that the problem with assessment/accountability in the education world today is not with implementation - assessment/accountability are great ideas, but sometimes administered poorly. Many times, this is because people at state, district, and school levels don't have the training to to efficiently and effectively create systems of assessment and accountability without duplication, overreporting, etc.
     
  7. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    I agree with Ray, HS teachers do more documentation than any other program I have been in. To pass the inspection takes a lot of work by a big group of people. Sometimes the regulations do get in the way of teaching.
     
  8. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Hmmm....what about raising the pay for all these teachers to match the higher expectations? What about lowering the adult/student ratio so teachers can do it without neglecting everything else? What about getting real about what 4 years olds should be doing (developmentally appropriate)?
     
  9. bondo

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    Nov 10, 2011

    It sounds like they are setting up things to take more money away from education . . .
     
  10. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

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    Nov 12, 2011

    Change Needed

    The changes are needed. As I read through the new rule, I'm still not pleased with the standards adopted for use of the CLASS Pre-K. in terms of recompetition.

    Of all the assessment tools I have been trained to use, this is my favorite because it gets to the nitty gritty, "What is actually happening in the classroom itself and the interaction between teachers and students."

    The CLASS Pre-k benchmarks, as described in the new rule, are too low, in my opinion. On a CLASS Pre-K scale of 1-7, in the 3 main areas of the scale you should not be able to score a 2 in Instructional Support and still be considered a quality program!

    Instructional Support is the most important domain! But, I understand the reasoning behind this low threshold because across the US this is about the average score for this domain. It's sad but true. I really think if you are looking for true reform, you must have a higher standard for what is being implemented in the classroom. See below, taken directly from the new rule.

    (1) After December 9, 2011, to have an
    average score across all classrooms
    observed below the following minimum
    thresholds on any of the three CLASS:
    Pre-K domains from the most recent
    CLASS: Pre-K observation:
    (i) For the Emotional Support domain
    the minimum threshold is 4;
    (ii) For the Classroom Organization
    domain, the minimum threshold is 3;
    (iii) For the Instructional Support
    domain, the minimum threshold is 2
    ;


    There are some really good Head Start classrooms with fabulous teachers. I've worked with them, I know. But, I have also toured some Head Start programs/classrooms where I felt so heartbroken for the children. Some are just awful!

    If they could get rid of some of the documentation, I think this would leave more funds to pay these teachers accordingly. The amount of paperwork that HS teachers are required to do is overwhelming! They would have the TIME to implement the changes that are critically needed for America's most vulnerable children if it wasn't for the massive amount of accountability paperwork that is required. For our program, this is the #1 reason teachers leave. It is a problem for this program that is looking to meet the needs of our most vulnerable children.

    Head Start teachers should be getting paid MORE than the public school preschool teachers. Head Start teachers are on the frontlines dealing with lots of issues that other Public Pre-k teachers may never encounter; especially the number of challenging behaviors and children with special needs. Head Start serves the highest number of children with special needs. It can be overwhelming at times for these caring teachers, who pour so much of their heart and soul into meeting the need of the children and their families.

    We have just as many assessments as another posted stated plus the work of meeting the NAEYC, state licensing and QRS guidelines. These are big changes for this federal program, changes that should have been made long ago for the amount of money that we spend on the federal program. With the new teacher qualification standards and this new rule, I hope this federal program can improve on the education outcomes for children.

    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-11-09/pdf/2011-28880.pdf
     
  11. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

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    Nov 12, 2011

    So True!

    This is what DRIVES ME CRAZY about Head Start! Just bonkers!!!:dizzy: It is very frustrating...

    If we got rid of the duplicatoin and overreporting, we could give these teachers a substantial pay raise. They are the ones that deserve the BEST pay! Not the people in administration/management.
     
  12. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    Nov 12, 2011

    Amen to that!!
     

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