Question about the Legality of a scheduling decision.

Discussion in 'General Education' started by HelloKiki, May 9, 2016.

  1. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 9, 2016

    Hello! I'm new here. I see that there are many teachers on this forum, and I'm hoping to get some opinions about my situation.

    I teach art at an alternative school. The students are separated by units and we (the teachers) go to the units to conduct classes. Our situation is unique and I know that we are asked to do unconventional things such as teach different levels or classes in one period. I feel very uncomfortable about some things they are asking us to do.
    The councilor has been placing isolated students in units I do not go to on my schedule. We have arriving new students at all times throughout the year. Her logic is that this student has had passing grades in art class at their home school and wants me to continue to give them art and then give them a semester grade and 9 weeks grade at the end of the school year. I feel very uncomfortable because I do not know or see these students at all. They are in different units and I am required to give a folder of work to one of their teachers to have them complete for my grades. I do not give them any instructions or model any techniques, everything is on paper transferred by another teacher. I'm art class, everything is hands on and all about technique and materials. How can I give a grade to a student that I do not actually teach? And how can I give grades to students that I may only have for 4 or 5 weeks? My admin says to just give them stuff to sketch. Obviously, they don't have a high regard for art class. It feels shady and I do not want to break any kind of rules that would put my teaching certification in jeopardy for these people.

    Any advice will be helpful! Thank you!
     
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  3. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    May 9, 2016

    Are you responsible for a grade for these students or are they being sent to you in order to fill their time in your classroom? It sounds like someone is possibly using your position as a glorified babysitter.
     
  4. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    May 9, 2016

    I have had kids on medical leave before that have needed me to do what you're being asked to do - send home a folder, grade what comes back. I see no issue. If you want to do something that's more measurable in order to give an accurate grade, you could send some reading materials and have the student answer questions or write a report on the subject as well.
     
  5. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 10, 2016

    Thank you for your comment. I am responsible for their grades, and I do feel like a babysitter. I just don't want to do anything that is unethical. I feel a little suspicious because I never receive anything via email - even when I send emails.
     
  6. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 10, 2016

    I have kind of treated the class as an "art appreciation" class, but it's a studio art class. I'm not really reaching my Teks. I'm relatively new to teaching so maybe I'm just getting a little too touchy about it. If it's a legal thing to do, then I don't mind doing it.
    Thank you for your comment. :)
     
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 10, 2016

    If they are doing work independently, that's okay. You can still be responsible for their grades. I've done independent studies courses where I'm the teacher of record and I assign grades even though I don't do much or any direct instruction. I don't see a problem with that. If, on the other hand, there's something else going on where you think that the students aren't doing any work at all or that someone is forging their work or something like that, that's a problem. I guess I'm not understanding what you think is going on.
     
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  8. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    May 10, 2016

    Okay, at first it sounded like you were responsible for their attendance but more as a placeholder. The power of the gradebook makes a difference.
     
  9. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    May 10, 2016

    If it's billed as a studio art class and that's how it will appear on transcripts, but there's no possibility of students doing the work that should be entailed in one, then there's definitely an issue.
     
  10. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 11, 2016

    Thank you for your comments. I guess I will continue giving the students what I can and just document everything. :)
     
  11. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 16, 2016

    There is a new development in this situation. My student has his folder to work on art everyday, but now, the admin has assigned my student another elective to do at the same time with another teacher leaving a folder. That means the student is supposed to work on my class the first half of the period and the other class the second half of the period. Now I really don't feel comfortable with that. That student will be getting two credits during the same period. It just doesn't sound legit.
     
  12. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    May 16, 2016

    If the goal is to get the student credit-proficient and if the student is doing the work it takes to get there, I honestly wouldn't be too worked up about this. They aren't asking you to assign fake grades or anything like that. This isn't a battle I would choose to fight, at least not with things as they are now.
     
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  13. HelloKiki

    HelloKiki Rookie

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    May 16, 2016

    Thank you for your response. I guess you're right, I shouldn't get too worked up about it. I have never heard of splitting a period with two classes before. Maybe at a charter school, but not in a public school.
     
  14. teacherpippi

    teacherpippi Habitué

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    May 16, 2016

    I took two credits during one period at a public school in high school. I went to one class 3 days/week and one class 2 days/week and flip-flopped each week. As long as the student is doing the work for you, I wouldn't worry too much about what they're also doing during the period.
     
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  15. mckbearcat48

    mckbearcat48 Cohort

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    May 16, 2016

    In terms of assessment, I guess you can only grade what you have at the time. I know that's not great advice, but it's the best I can do.
     
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