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Sigh...re:Learn This



So, how many waiters do you remember that gave you good service?  How
many do you remember gave you lousy service?

How many teachers do you remember gave you a good educational
experience?  How many did you hate?  Did you hate them because you were
young and they didn't let you do whatever you wanted to do?  Were they
really cruel or were they strict?  I totally agree that no art teacher
should tell a student that they are unartistic, or shouldn't waste paper
on their work.  But I still believe that teachers by and large are
committed, caring individuals who work under extremely difficult
situations (large class size, little support, long meetings, unrealistic
curriculum expectations).  Could YOU teach elementary school...language
arts (grammar, syntax, vocabulary, spelling, composition), math, social
studies, reading, physical education, music, art, library and research
skills, sex education, drug and alcohol education, swimming!, anger
management skills, interpersonal relationships, health and nutrition,
study skills, test taking skills, career development, foreign languages,
cooperative learning skills, etc etc etc in six hours per day...oh
yes...don't forget to include lunch and recess in that mix...guess we
are down to about four and a half hours per day!!!

I worked in a school (and am currently working in another school) where
I had the utmost respect for the caring, dedicated, responsible teachers
who had integrity about their profession.  It was a life-changing
experience.  I know for a fact our district doesn't do tenure, and I
haven't heard about public schools in our area who do...I know if I
don't perform, my job is on the line and this is my seventh year in the
public schools.  I am working alongside another teacher who is on
probation not because he did something wrong but because he was less
effectual, and he has been teaching longer than I have.

Hillary Clinton said that we cannot improve education by tearing it
down.  Whether or not you like Hillary, she has a very valid point.
Instead of putting down education, how about looking at how education
can better reflect what we want to be taught?  When was the last time
you visited a school board meeting, a classroom, a back-to-school night?
Can you really speak to education if you haven't been near the place in
10 or 20 years?

Sorry, Peter...I'll stop now...but many times I agree that topics are
better served addressed in a listserv that they are technically
off-topic for...I belong to a couple of education listservs but when I
want real honest opinions, I get them when I am 'off thread' on this
listserv.

mjlinford@worldnet.att.net

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